INTACS Procedure Los Angeles | Keratoconus San Francisco


Intacs fingertip

What Are INTACS™?

Intacs (also known as Intracorneal Rings, ICRs, and Corneal Ring Segments) are two tiny half rings designed to permanently correct vision when placed within the eye. They are made of a special biocompatible plastic that has been used in contact lenses and cataract surgery for nearly 50 years. Inside the cornea, they cannot be felt and are practically invisible.

Intacs is highly effective in treating Keratoconus (a thinning disorder of the cornea that causes distortion of the corneal shape and therefore reduced vision) and Myopia.

How Do INTACS™ Work?

Anesthetic drops are used to numb the eye, which is held open throughout the procedure to prevent blinking.

Step 1: A single, small opening is made in the cornea.

Step 2: The eye is prepared for Intacs™ placement. To stablize your eye, the centering guide is placed on the surface for one to two minutes. During this time, two semicircular tunnels are made in the cornea. The Intacs™ will be placed in these tunnels.

The cornea has several layers to it, like a pad of paper. Making a place for the Intacs™ is like separating two pages just enough to create a space.

Step 3: The Intacs™ segments are placed. After the second Intacs™ segment is placed, the small opening in the cornea is closed.

Step 4: You enjoy your new vision!

What Are the Benefits of INTACS™?

  • FDA-Approved
  • Immediate vision improvement
  • Maintenance-free
  • No corneal tissue removed
  • INTACS can be removed or replaced

The procedure for INTACS™ is safe and quick. INTACS™ reshape the curve of your cornea so that light rays focus properly on the retina. Objects in the distance, which once appeared blurry, become sharp and clear.

Who is a Candidate for INTACS™?

  • Nearsighted patients with a prescription between -1.00 and -3.00 diopters
  • Astigmatism of 1.00 syl or less
  • At least 21 years or older
  • Patients with Keratoconus
  • Healthy eyes, free from injuries

There may be times when IQ Laser Vision may need to turn away patients because they are not a good candidate for the procedure because our number one concern is not the number of patients we bring in but the quality of care and high level of service we provide. That is why it is important to come in for our FREE CONSULTATION, in order for IQ Laser Vision to determine your candidacy and provide the best vision correction options for you.

What Can You Expect?

Vision improvement can be noticed right after the Intacs have been inserted. Most patients report feeling no pain at all during the procedure.Patients can usually resume regular activities within 2-3 days after the procedure. Typically full stabilization is achieved after one month, in which most healing occurs during the first 7 days. In rare cases, patients report the presence of the Intacs the day after surgery, but that foreign body sensation disappears as the eye heals.

In U.S. clinical studies, 97 percent of patients achieved 20/40 or better with Intacs (Functional Vision – 20/40 or better – DMV minimum for operating a moving vehicle).

What are the Risks of INTACS™?

Possible side effects may include:

  • Light sensitivity
  • Decreased clarity in dim light
  • Glare or haloes from lights at night
  • Blurry or Double vision
  • Fluctuating distance vision
  • These side effects typically disappear as the eye heals and generally occur in rare cases.

All risks are discussed and addressed before, during and after the procedure. IQ Laser Vision is dedicated to answering any and all questions you may have to ensure complete conformability and proper expectations with the procedure.


A: Individuals as young as 8 years old may experience Keratoconus. Early stages of Keratoconus can be treated with rigid gas permeable contact lenses to brace the corneal buldge; or glasses to improve vision. In advanced stages, corneal transplant surgery is usually the only alternative. Intacs can help preserve the corneal structure longer.

A: Statistically, about 1 out of every 2,000 individuals will be affected by Keratoconus. The cause is not known, but experts have found strong correlations that allergies, genetics, and environmental factors (such as wind and the sun’s UV rays) may be factors in its cause.

A: Keratoconus is highly unlikely to cause total blindness.  If left untreated, it can cause serious vision impairment.

A: INTACS are made to be a permanent solution.  No maintenance is needed and they will retain the proper corneal shape.  In rare cases, Intacs can be removed if required with no problem.

A: INTACS are made of medical polymer that has been safely used in eyes for over 45 years.  The material’s full name is polymethylmethacrylate, or PMMA, is also used to produce intraocular lenses(Visian ICL).

A: It depends on your particular case , but a majority of our patients return to normal activity about 2-3 days after the procedure. 

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