The most famous phakic implants are the Artisan or Iris-Claw (iris linked implants) as well as the Visian ICL. The first type of these implants has been used since 1986. Currently, they can be injected into the eye by micro-incisions of 2.7 to 3 mm.


This procedure is indicated for strong myopia (> 10-12 diopters), strong hyperopia (> 5 diopters) and some astigmatisms (up to 6 diopters). This is the only possible technique to correct important refractive impairments. A combination of this technique with a laser treatment (EpiLASIK or LASIK) is possible in order to obtain optimal result (technique called "Bi-Optics").

Surgical technique

This surgical procedure is carried out under general anaesthesia together with the placement of an intra-ocular lens usually in front of the iris (pre-irian implants: Artisan, Artiflex, Verysise, ...) or behind the iris (ICL, ... ).

Video Explanation

Post-operative evolution

Visual recovery is fast (24 hours most of the time) and painless. Patients should be annually monitored to check their lens condition and verify that the cornea tolerates the presence of the implant (endothelial cell count).

Possible complications

  • This is an intra-ocular procedure
  • In some cases (wide pupils), patients complain of halos
  • Low risk of ocular hypertension, of corneal decompensation, of cataract, of infection (0.1%) and intra-ocular inflammation

When complications arise, the intra-ocular lens is removed and the eye recover in most cases  its previous state. In case of cataract, a cataract surgery can be performed. In cases of corneal decompensation, a corneal transplant is sometimes necessary. These complications are rare.


Intra-ocular implants give excellent results but should be reserved for patients not eligible for other techniques because they still imply an intra-ocular procedure.