ICL Surgery - Implantable Contact Lenses

Are your eyes unsuitable for LASIK? You could still enjoy clear vision without glasses, with Implantable Contact Lenses from Eye Institute.

Implantable Contact Lenses (Visian ICLs) are the ideal solution if you struggle to wear external contact lenses, but you’re unsuitable for laser eye surgery because of:

  • Severe myopia (short sightedness) i.e. over -8.0 diopters and up to -20.0 diopters
  • Severe hyperopia (long sightedness) i.e. over +4.0 diopters and up to +10.0 diopters
  • High astigmatism 
  • Thin corneas

The Visian ICL technique has been in use since 1993, and more than 125,000 procedures have been carried out worldwide, so the technology is highly developed and very safe. A Visian ICL is very safe to use, extremely biocompatible (made from Collamer with some collagen), and can even be removed in the future, as it is not designed to alter the structure of the eye in any way.


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Procedure time

The ICL procedure will take no more than about 15 minutes. 

Typical results

Implantable Contact Lenses work in much the same way as external contact lenses, but are placed inside your eye during a simple operation, giving you permanently clearer vision.

How do Implantable Contact Lenses work?

Implantable Contact Lenses are made from a special ‘biocompatible’ material that works with your body’s natural chemistry. Each thin, foldable lens is uniquely tailored to your eye, and custom made for you in Switzerland.

Your custom made Implantable Contact Lenses are inserted behind your iris (the coloured part of your eye) and in front of your eye’s natural lens during a short, virtually painless procedure. They alter the focusing point of your eye to give you clearer vision, in the same way that wearing glasses or contact lenses does.

Unlike many older designs of ICL, you’ll find your ICLs from Eye Institute are completely invisible to anyone looking at your eyes. It’s also safe to continue playing contact sports after your ICL surgery.

What’s involved in an ICL procedure?

The ICL procedure is virtually painless, and takes around the same time as a typical LASIK operation to correct each eye. You’ll be given a topical (no needle!) anaesthetic to numb your eye, so you won’t feel any pain, and a mild sedative can be given to help with any nerves you may have.

Then, using advanced no-stitch surgical techniques, the surgeon will insert the Visian ICL through a tiny self-sealing slit in your cornea (the surface of the eye).


The ICL procedure will take no more than about 15 minutes, after which you’ll be free to go home within 2 hours, returning for a post operative examination the following morning. You should be able to return to normal activities within days.

You’ll need to have some follow-up checks after your ICL operation, and you’ll continue to have check-ups every year while your Implantable Contact Lenses are fitted. Don’t worry if you live outside Auckland though – your check-ups can be arranged with your local optometrist near where you live.

Make an appointment now

Call us on 0800 99 2020

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