Astigmatism is a common refractive error in which the cornea and the lens of the eye have an irregular curvature. For the cataract patient, eliminating corneal astigmatism results in better overall vision following cataract surgery and the implant of an intraocular lens (IOL).
The most commonly used procedure to correct preexisting mild to moderate astigmatism (less than -3.0 diopter) is Limbal Relaxing Incisions (LRIs). Surgeons make a pair of incisions at the corneal limbus and induce changes in the corneal astigmatism by varying the length, depth and location of the incisions.
The procedure is performed at the same time as cataract surgery and takes just a few minutes to complete. Benefits include an almost immediate recovery of vision and reduced healing time and risk associated with a secondary procedure.