Implantable collamer posterior chamber intraocular lenses: a review of potential complications

J Refract Surg. 2011 Oct;27(10):765-76. doi: 10.3928/1081597X-20110617-01. Epub 2011 Jun 30.


Purpose: To review the peer-reviewed literature reporting postoperative complications of the most recent models of Visian Implantable Collamer posterior chamber intraocular lenses (ICL, STAAR Surgical Co).

Methods: A literature search of the PubMed database was performed to identify all articles related to ICL complications. Articles were obtained and reviewed to identify those that reported complications using the latest ICL designs.

Results: Cataract was the major postoperative complication reported: 136 (5.2%) in 2592 eyes. Of those, 43.4% (n=59) were reported within 1 year, 15.4% (n=21) between 1 and 3 years, and 35.3% (n=48) ≥ 3 years after ICL implantation. Twenty-one (15.4%) cataracts were reported as surgically induced, 46 (33.8%) eyes had poor vault (<200 μm), and cataract surgery was carried out in 27.9% (n=38) of eyes. Early acute intraocular pressure increase was also reported to be relatively frequent, whereas acute pupillary block was less frequent and mostly resolved with additional iridotomies. A total of 42 ICLs were explanted due to cataract and IOP. Reported endothelial cell loss varied from 9.9% at 2 years to 3.7% 4 years postoperatively. This loss was reported to be more pronounced within the first 1 to 2 years, with stability or lower progression after that time.

Conclusions: The majority of reported complications after ICL implantation are cataract formation. The improvements in lens geometry and more accurate nomograms applied to the selection of the lens to be implanted, in addition to the surgeon's learning curve, might be factors in the decreased occurrence of postoperative complications reported currently.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cataract / etiology
  • Corneal Endothelial Cell Loss / etiology
  • Endophthalmitis / etiology
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Lens Implantation, Intraocular*
  • Phakic Intraocular Lenses*
  • Postoperative Complications*
  • Prosthesis Design
  • Retinal Detachment / etiology
  • Risk Factors
  • Time Factors