Vistar Insights

Artificial Iris Implant Surgery

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Plastic surgery has long served as a solution for people who are unhappy with their appearance, but now a controversial new procedure takes it a step further – the artificial iris implant.

This procedure was first created by ophthalmologist Dr. Kenneth J. Rosenthal to correct eye defects such as heterochromia (two different eye colors) or albinism when trials began. Now, the artificial iris implant procedure is advertised as a cosmetic surgery for those who are unhappy with their eye color and want to change it – permanently.

The artificial iris is a thin prosthesis made of the same ophthalmic grade silicone used for intraocular lenses. The artificial iris is very flexible and can be folded and inserted into the eye by making a peripheral corneal surgical incision, about 2.8 millimeters in length. The prosthesis then unfolds over the natural iris. The procedure is touted as “safe” and “painless” and only takes about 15 minutes for each eye. It cannot correct any vision defects, so patients still need to wear refractive instruments to correct their vision.

Most other laser procedures remove a layer of melanin from the iris, resulting in a change of color. This surgery uses an implant that, according to proponents of the procedure, is easy to remove should any complications arise.

Video sharing sites like YouTube are full of pro artificial implant surgery testimonials from very happy patients. However, some ophthalmologists warn against the surgery, noting that it is possible that the procedure can cause elevated pressure inside the eye that could result in glaucoma, corneal injury, cataracts, or reduced vision and blindness.

Would you be willing to take a risk to change your eye color?