1. Standard Monofocal Lenses
focus at one distance. Typically the lens used corrects the distance vision and the patient wears reading glasses. If the patient has much astigmatism glasses will be needed for both far and near vision.
2. Astigmatism Correcting Lenses (Toric IOLs)
Patients with Toric lenses most likely will not need glasses or contacts, but they may still need reading glasses for close-up vision. Patients with astigmatism will also have sharper distance vision with Toric lenses than with standard lenses.
3. Presbyopic Correcting Lenses
are like bifocals. They focus at distance and near. You still might need glasses at times. The two best at this time are the Tecnis and Restor IOL.
Multifocal IOL. This is the newest and best IOL currently available. It provides good distance and intermediate distance vision. Patients with this IOL may need weak reading glasses only on occassion.
Multifocal IOL (AMO). This is a multi-zone diffractive IOL (focuses light by bending the light waves). The central zone is set for distance and the peripheral zone focuses at near but maybe a little too close for most people. It also corrects for spherical aberration to improve vision.
IOL (Alcon). This IOL utilizes both refraction and diffraction optical strategies and also corrects for spherical aberration. The design seems better for night time driving than the other designs. The near segment provides good vision at near point for most people.
4. Accomodating IOLs
can change focus to focus at different distances, They can give you a range of distance, intermediate, and close-up vision, reducing or eliminating your need for glasses or contacts, including reading glasses. The Crystalens is the best of this type of IOL.
(B&L). This lens design allows the IOL to move forward and back changing how the eye focuses. It usually gives usable vision at distance and intermediate distances. The patient probably will need reading glasses for near tasks. If the patient has much astigmatism vision probably will not be adequate.
There are several other IOL designs currently being investigated for FDA approval.