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my very good experience with AMO Tecnis Symfony toric

First, i want to thank "software developer" for his interest in continuing a dialogue with all users of medhelp.  He was of tremedous help when I began researching IOL options earlier this year. I owe him a huge debt of gratitude

(He is a non-medical expert, IMHO, and well worth listening to.)

I live in Europe, Italy. I was highly myopic (-11D) and with astigmatism of approx 2.75D.  Advanced but not incapacitating cataracts in both eyes. I was "useless" without glasses, perhaps legally blind. I could see if something was a few inches from my face but nothing beyond that

Late in 2014, I had decided on the AT LISA, a tri focal lens, and then I started reading about the AMO Tecnis Symfony Toric.  The more I read, the more I beccame convinced that this was the state of the art.  I emailed with surgeons in Europe and the US and had good responses from all but those in Italy. (The only one who replied in Italy said I was too informed and knew in advance what I wanted; I wasn't the type of patient he wanted to deal with !!!)

I would say that at least 3 doctors in the US said a/ that they could not wait for the Symfony to be approved in the US and b/ the Symfony was the IOL they would have implanted in their own eyes. That was a great sign I was on the right track

I finally decided on a doctor in Austria, and had the first eye done in late June and the second a week later. I am extremely satisfied, not 100% as I will describe later.  Maybe 8.5 or 9 out of 10

I had the toric Symfony implanted with micromonovision of -.75  in my left, non dominant eye, to improve near reading without glasses. From having worn contact lenses with monovision, I knew I could adapt, which is not the case for everyone.

Exactly what I was told I would experience, I am experiencing, so no surprises:
yes, I have halos and starbursts around certain lights. They are not a problem.  My eyesight for night driving is good to excellent

Without reading glasses, I can read a newspaper easily at 20 inches with both eyes (the right eye is a little blurred) and close up at 10 inches with the left eye only. With 1D reading glasses, which I use when I will be reading a lot, i have no blurred vision

As for distance, the change from before and after is mind-boggling.  The right dominant eye sees extremely clearly (better than 20/20) and the left eye is a little blurred due to the micro monovision I opted for. But with both eyes, I am very happy with distance vision

During dim light situations, beware that near vision accuity decreases, so reading a menu in a darkish restaurant will probably be a problem.  Reading glasses eliminate this problem, but I didnt wish to always carry reading glasses


All the above is well known about the Symfony, most importantly that its near vision is not as good as the AT LISA but in all other aspects, I believe it is better.

If I am not 10 our of 10 satisfied, it is because I stlll see a slight "second image" with teh left eye. I think this is because there is some residual astigmatism, and because of the micro monovision.  And of course, I would like to have better near vision to perhaps 5 inches rather than 10, but I knew this was going to be the case

One thing that i don't read as much about is this: In a face-to-face conversation, again more in dim light than in bright light,  I find myself "pulling back" to a comfortable distance of 20-25 inches

what would I do differently? perhaps I would have chosen a doctor who used femtoscond laser.  But the rapport with the doctor is critical I feel. and eye surgeons, like most surgeons, have their "peculiarities".

I would say that the Symfony is definitely worth the price difference and greatly superior to a monofocal in my humble, non expert, opinion. My two sisters have monofocal IOLs, and while it is not possible to compare how they might have fared with the Symfony , or I with a monofocal, I am much happier with teh result than they are

I will "watch" this discussion to answer questions, and I am happy to email to anyone who wants to start an off-line conversation
6 Responses
177275 tn?1511758844
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Avatar universal
Hi Jim,
I presume you are an American  or other native English speaker from your command of the language. I laughed when you mentioned pulling back to 20 - 25 inches when in conversation - any closer than that for me would be a fairly intimate conversation! (cultural maybe - I'm Australian).
I am booked in in December to have the same type of lenses implanted. Like you I owe a debt to SD and other posters who have been so generous with their time and honest in relating their experiences.
I wish you continued good luck and health.
Grum
1 Comments
Best of luck to you too. The Ophthalmologist this month has an article on Symfony and micromonovision
177275 tn?1511758844
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Avatar universal
HI Jim,
I am also considering the Symfony lens, but the Lisa sounds appealing for near vision. Would you elaborate on why you decided to go with the Symfony instead of the Lisa as you were originally considering?
1 Comments
Chris, indeed up until Dec 2014, the AT Lisa was the lens I was choosing. But (fortunately) I started seeing info on the Symfony in January 2015, and decided immediately to get the Symfony. My reasons were largely because of what I read about better Symfony vision throughout the spectrum EXCEPT near (or very near) vision. If you have read Software Developer's excellent posts, and professional articles in mags like CRST, you will have more than ample data on the "curves". Yes, I understand that AT LISA is somewhat better at near distances, but I figured that I still would need reading glasses to read fine print with either IOL, and that for all else the Symfony would be better. I am fine reading at 15-20 inches with the Symfony and only use 1.0 magnifiers if I am going to read a lot. I should mention that I have micro mono vision in my non-dominant eye and that helps a lot in keeping the need for magnifiers to a minimum. As you will note in studies, in dark conditions, reading is more difficult , and it certainly is for me. But I think that the same is true for the AT Lisa. One last comment, in my 5 month research, I heard from a few US doctors that 1/ if they needed and IOL, it would be the Symfony and 2/ they could not wait to get their hands on it in the US.  If you wish to chat, please send me a PM and we can arrange a time. Good luck with your choice
177275 tn?1511758844
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Avatar universal
My understanding is that multifocal lenses (such as the AT Lisa) do worse under dim light than the Symfony.  One think I see a lot of people doing (even younger people) is using their smartphones to illuminate restaurant menus.
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