Complete Guide to ICL Eye Surgery: Cost, Safety, and Age Limits

ICL Eye Surgery

Treatment Duration


20 Minutes

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30 Minutes

Treatment Cost



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ICL Eye Surgery

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Are you looking for a solution to get rid of glasses or contact lenses? Then your search ends here. Intraocular Collamer Lens or ICL eye surgery is a procedure that has transformed the lives of people seeking clear vision. 

Read below to know more on ICL surgery, the benefits, risks and complications, etc.

Procedure Name

Implantable Collamer Lens (ICL) Surgery

Alternative Name

EVO Implantable Collamer or Intraocular Contact Lens or Vision ICL

Conditions Treated

Myopia, Hyperopia, Astigmatism

Benefits of Procedure

Improved vision

Treated By


You can check ICL Eye Surgery Cost here.

What is ICL surgery?

The ICL eye surgery full form in healthcare terminology is Intraocular Collamer Lens. It is a revolutionary vision correction procedure for addressing various refractive errors (blurry sight). This includes nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and astigmatism. 

ICL surgery involves the implantation of a micro-thin, biocompatible lens inside the eye. It is made of a soft and flexible material called collamer. The implant is placed behind the iris and in front of the natural lens of the eye. This positioning allows the ICL to work alongside the natural lens of the eye without altering the corneal tissue.

Anatomy of the Eye

Our eye is a complex organ responsible for vision. Its primary components include:

  1. Cornea: The transparent front part of the eye. It focuses light onto the retina.

  2. Iris: The coloured portion in the eye. The muscles here change the size of the pupil to regulate the incident light.

  3. Pupil: The black circular opening in the core of the iris. It regulates the quantity of light that reaches the retina.

  4. Lens: Located behind the iris and refracts light to focus it further on the retina.

  5. Retina:The innermost layer at the back of the eye. It contains light-sensitive cells (rods and cones) that convert light into nerve signals.

  6. Optic Nerve: Transmits nerve signals from the retina to the brain.

Functioning of ICL

  1. Collamer Lens Placement: The ICL is inserted through a small incision and implanted between the iris and the natural lens.

  2. Pupil Size Adjustment: The implanted lens works alongside the natural iris. It adapts to changes in pupil size to maintain visual clarity in various lighting conditions

Conditions Treated with ICL Surgery

As stated, ICL eye surgery is primarily designed to address issues related to the eyesight. This provides a viable solution for individuals experiencing visual impairment. Primary conditions treated with this method include:

  1. Complex Myopia: ICL surgery is effective in correcting extensive nearsightedness (vision unclarity for objects at a farther distance). It is employed when traditional laser eye surgeries like LASIK might be less feasible.

  2. Moderate to Severe Hyperopia: Individuals with significant farsightedness (blurry sight for nearby surroundings) can benefit from this technique.

  3. Astigmatism: A condition characterised by impaired visual functioning at all distances due to abnormal corneal structure. ICLs are also designed to correct an irregular curvature of the cornea or lens.

Who needs an ICL surgery?

ICL eye surgery is suitable for those who meet specific criteria. The right candidates for ICL surgery typically include:

  1. Individuals with high degrees of nearsightedness (myopia)

  2. People who weren’t eligible to get LASIK due to thin corneas or other issues.

  3. Those who wish to avoid altering the natural shape of the cornea.

  4. Individuals who want the flexibility of reversible vision correction.

  5. Adults under the ICL surgery age limit (approx. 18 to 50 years).

  6. Candidates with stable prescription, meaning that their vision has stayed the same for the past year.

  7. People with overall good eye health, free from conditions such as glaucoma, cataracts, or retinal issues.

Expert Doctors

Dr. Indrani Goswami


26+ Years




Dr. Usharani


24+ Years




NABH Accredited Hospitals

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Benefits of ICL Surgery

ICL eye surgery has numerous advantages, making it a practical and long-lasting choice for vision correction. Here are the significant benefits:

  1. Reduced dependence on glasses or contact lenses

  2. Minimal impact on the natural corneal shape

  3. Rapid visual recovery

  4. Suitable for a diverse range of refractive errors

  5. Reversible procedure with lens removal or exchange options

  6. The lens offers excellent night vision

Protocol Before and On the Day of ICL Surgery

Following instructions is essential to ensure a smooth and successful ICL surgery process. Here is what you can anticipate prior to the surgery and on the day of the procedure:

Before Surgery 

Patients undergo a detailed evaluation to assess their eligibility. After the thorough eye checkup and determination of lens power, the doctor discusses the procedure. Your ophthalmologist will explain the expected outcomes and potential risks. 

One week before the surgery, tiny holes (one or two) are created in the iris with the help of a laser (Laser Iridotomy). These tiny holes facilitate proper drainage of aqueous fluid. Thus, preventing the pressure buildup and accumulation of fluid after the surgery.

Now, with the advent of the EVO Implantable Collamer Lens, which comes with a small central hole, laser iridotomy becomes unnecessary. It allows fluids to flow naturally through the opening.



Pre-op Assessment

  1. Corneal thickness 

  2. Pupil size. 

Risk Evaluation

  1. Allergies

  2. Surgery benefits

  3. Procedural risk

Anaesthesia Selection

Typically local or topical. 


Not required.

Lens Determination

  1. Appropriate power

  2. Type of ICL lens

On the Day of Surgery

The doctor will advise you to wash your hair on the day of the surgery. This is to ensure that no water goes into your eyes for the next five days.Your ophthalmologist will also tell you not to use any makeup on that day

Patients arrive at the surgical facility and complete the required formalities. Patients are then guided to the surgical room. The individual is required to lie down on their back on the operating table.





Surgical Preparation

  1. Hospital gown

  2. Procedure briefing

  3. Sterilisation process

Physical Evaluation

Vitals checkup (Heart rate, blood pressure, oxygen saturation, etc)

IV Line

For valium (tranquiliser) and pain medication.

Anaesthesia Administration

Local (Injection) or topical anaesthesia (numbing eye drops).

ICL Surgery Procedure

The ICL surgery is customized to meet the unique needs of each patient. The whole procedure lasts for 20-30 minutes only. We will delve into the step-by-step procedure, exploring the various aspects involved:

  1. Patient Positioning: The patient is told to lie on their back on an operating table.

  2. Sedation: The patient will be given a mild sedative to temporarily prevent individuals from moving their eyes.

  3. Anaesthesia: This is administered to prevent any sensation or discomfort. The two types are local and topical. The choice is based on the patient's condition and the surgeon's recommendation.

  4. Cleaning of Surgical Site: To reduce the risk of infection and ensure a safe surgery, the eye receiving the ICL is meticulously cleansed.

  5. Surgical Approach: The doctor makes a small incision (less than 3mm long) at the edge of the cornea. This creates a pathway for inserting the folded ICL. They might use a lubricant to safeguard the cornea during this step.

  6. ICL Insertion and Placement: The folded lens is placed behind the iris through the tiny cut. The lens unfolds once in position, providing vision correction.

  7. Closing the Incision: The lubricant is taken out. Mostly, the cuts are so small that they heal on their own, making stitches nonessential.In a few cases, the wound is sealed through sutures. 

  8. Immediate Post-procedure: After applying ointment or eye drops (antibiotic), an eye patch will be placed over the operated eye.

After ICL Surgery

The period following ICL eye surgery is crucial to ensure a smooth recovery. Here's an overview of what to expect after the ICL surgery:

In Hospital Recovery

  1. Monitoring: Patients are moved to a recovery area and observed for vital signs. This ensures immediate intervention in case of any complications.

  2. Postoperative Discomfort: About an hour later, you may feel a burning sensation and irritation as the numbing medicine wears off. Using artificial tears can provide relief and make your eye feel more comfortable.

  3. Intolerance of Light: It's common to experience light sensitivity and blurred vision immediately after the surgery. However, your eyesight will improve within 24 hours, and it continues to enhance for 2-3 days.

  4. Eye Shield Usage: Patients may receive an eye patch to protect the site during the initial recovery period. This helps prevent accidental rubbing or touching, reducing the risk of infection.

  5. Eye Drops: The doctor will prescribe these to prevent infection and maintain hygiene. You will need to use these medications for about 2 weeks post surgery.

  6. Discharge: Patients receive post-surgical care instructions before leaving the hospital or surgical facility.You should also not drive back home.

At-home Recovery Expectations 

There are several guidelines to be followed after leaving the hospital. One can expect the following:

  1. Initial Days: Patients are advised to rest and avoid strenuous activities. Abstain from lifting any weight, bending over to pick up objects from the ground. Steer clear of anything which puts pressure on the eye.

  2. No Eye Touching: There should be no rubbing of the eyes for 1-2 weeks. This can disturb the healing process and potentially dislocate the implanted lens.

  3. Maintaining Hygiene: It's acceptable to softly clean around the eye using a damp washcloth or cotton ball. Avoid getting dirty or soapy water in the eye for at least 5 days.

  4. Gradual Improvement:While vision may initially be blurry, it improves significantly in the next 24 hours and is enhanced over the first 2-3 days.

  5. Medications:It's essential to follow the prescribed regimen to minimise the risk of infection.

First Follow-up Appointment

The patient's first review visit will likely be scheduled for the next day. This is to monitor progress and address any concerns.

  1. Vision Assessment: Evaluation of the patient's eyesight to determine the effectiveness of the ICL surgery. Any necessary adjustments or additional instructions are provided based on the observations.

  2. Healing Progress: Examination of the eyes to analyse the recovery. This includes checking for signs of inflammation, infection, or other complications. 

Risks and Complications of ICL Surgery

ICL surgery is generally deemed safe and effective. Approximately 95% of individuals undergoing this surgery express satisfaction with the outcomes. Yet, potential risks are involved. Patients must be aware of these and promptly report any concerning symptoms.

Here are some of the possible complications associated with this procedure:

  1. Infection: There is a minimal risk of contamination after ICL surgery. Adherence to instructions, including proper use of prescribed eye drops, helps minimise it.

  2. Cataract Formation: While uncommon, the treatment may cause the development of cataracts over time. Regular eye checkups are essential to monitor the health of the natural lens.

  3. Dislocation of the ICL: There is a slight risk of the lens shifting from its intended position. 

  4. Irregular Vision Issues: Some individuals may experience visual anomalies (glare, halos, or difficulty to see in the dark). These are often temporary and tend to improve as the eyes adjust.

  5. Glaucoma: It is characterized by increased intraocular pressure (eye pressure), and it can lead to optic nerve damage and vision loss. If an increase is detected, appropriate measures are advised.

Risks of Delaying ICL Surgery

Delaying ICL surgery may have specific implications. It's vital for individuals considering this procedure to be aware of these factors:

  1. Progression of Refractive Errors: The eyesight may further deteriorate and lead to a greater dependence on corrective lenses.

  2. Reduced Quality of Life: Individuals with high prescriptions may continue to experience visual limitations that impact their daily activities. 

Note: It's important to understand that the decision to undergo ICL surgery is personal. Individuals should make an informed decision after thorough consultation with an ophthalmologist.

When to consult a doctor?

Patients should promptly consult their eye surgeon if they experience any of the following symptoms after the treatment:

  1. Persistent pain or discomfort in the eyes

  2. Sudden changes in vision

  3. Signs of infection, such as redness, swelling, or discharge

  4. Severe light sensitivity

Cost of ICL Surgery

During the consultation phase, individuals must discuss the ICL surgery cost with their ophthalmologist. Here’s an estimated overview:

ICL Surgery

Approximate Cost


₹ 1,30,000


₹ 1,60,000

Factors that may affect the price of ICL surgery include:

  1. Type of ICL Used: There are many kinds of intraocular collamer lenses, including Indian and imported. The cost may be influenced by the type and complexity of the lens chosen for the surgery.

  2. Surgeon's Reputation: The level of the doctor’s experience performing the surgery can impact the overall price. 

  3. Surgical Facility: The hospital (or clinic) expense can contribute to the total cost. Factors such as the location, amenities, and equipment may influence the pricing.

  4. Preoperative Evaluation: Expenses related to pre-surgical examinations also influence the overall ICL eye surgery cost.

  5. Geographic Location: The price can vary significantly based on the region or country. Different healthcare markets have distinct pricing structures.


ICL eye surgery is a modern and effective solution for people wanting long-lasting vision correction. With its reversible nature, the method provides a valuable alternative to traditional laser procedures.

Understanding the decision-making process for ICL surgery is crucial, and HexaHealth is here to assist. Our platform provides access to expert opinions and the ability to schedule consultations with experienced surgeons. Get in touch!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

ICL eye surgery is a vision correction procedure involving implanting a lens inside the eye. This addresses refractive errors such as myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism.


Ideal candidates typically have specific characteristics and refractive needs that make them well-suited for ICL surgery. These include people with:

  1. High myopia, hyperopia, or astigmatism

  2. The desire for reversible correction

  3. Stable prescription


ICL surgery addresses a range of vision problems, including:

  1. Severe nearsightedness (myopia)

  2. Farsightedness (hyperopia)

  3. Astigmatism


ICL surgery differs from LASIK in its approach to vision correction. LASIK reshapes the cornea using a laser. ICL involves the implantation of a lens inside the eye without altering the corneal tissue.


There are several advantages of having an ICL surgery. The key benefits include:

  1. High-quality and stable vision correction

  2. Reversible procedure

  3. Minimal impact on corneal tissue

  4. Quick and relatively painless recovery

  5. Potential reduction in dependence on glasses or contact lenses


In ICL eye surgery, a micro-thin material called Collamer is used. This lens is carefully implanted inside the eye, behind the iris and in front of the natural lens.


ICL surgery, like any other medical procedure, comes with risks and disadvantages. These include:

  1. Infection

  2. Elevated intraocular pressure

  3. Dislocated lens

  4. Possibility of glare or halos


ICL surgery is generally deemed safe and effective, with a low risk of complications. The procedure has been proven to provide excellent vision correction outcomes.


ICL surgery is generally recommended for individuals aged 18 to 50.  This range ensures that the patient's prescription is stable and the eyes are in a suitable condition.


Choosing the right ICL surgeon is a crucial decision. Here are significant factors to consider:

  1. Check board certification.

  2. Verify experience and specialisation.

  3. Ask for referrals.

  4. Research patient reviews.


Recovery time after ICL surgery is typically rapid, with many patients experiencing improved vision within a few days. While individual experiences may vary, most people can resume normal activities within a week.


Treating both eyes simultaneously in ICL surgery is not recommended due to the possible risks and complications. Sequential treatment, addressing one eye at a time, allows for better monitoring of individual healing.


The ICL implantation technique involves making a small incision to insert a folded Intraocular Collamer Lens (ICL). The lens is placed behind the iris and in front of the natural lens. Once in position, the ICL unfolds, providing a clear vision.


ICL surgery is typically performed in an outpatient surgical facility with specialised eye surgery infrastructure. These centres are often designed to provide a controlled and sterile environment for such procedures.


ICL surgery is relatively quick, typically lasting between 20 to 30 minutes per eye. The efficiency of the treatment allows patients to achieve vision correction with minimal time commitment.


ICL surgery is generally performed using topical or local anaesthesia. Numbing drops are applied to ensure the eye remains pain-free during the procedure.


Follow-up appointments are essential after ICL surgery to monitor healing progress and address potential complications. These consultations ensure the ongoing success of the procedure.


The surgeon provides specific guidelines that should be followed after ICL surgery. These are as follows:

  1. Avoid rubbing or touching the eyes

  2. Use prescribed eye drops as directed

  3. Protect eyes from bright lights and sunlight

  4. Avoid swimming for a specific period

  5. Limit strenuous physical activities


Most individuals can resume normal activities within a few days after ICL surgery. It's essential to follow the specific timelines given by your surgeon. Attend follow-up appointments for a smooth recovery.


Insurance coverage for ICL surgery cost varies. The procedure is often considered elective and may not be covered. Patients are advised to check with their provider to understand specific details.


The average ICL eye surgery cost is ₹ 1,45,000. Please note the price may vary from one person to another.


Yes! Many eye care centres offer financing options to help individuals manage ICL surgery costs. One can also explore the alternatives like medical loans and cashless claims.


ICL implants are designed to be a long-term vision correction solution. With proper care and regular eye check-ups, they can last indefinitely, providing sustained clear vision.


ICL implants are not considered permanent, as they can be removed or exchanged if necessary. The reversibility of surgery allows for adjustments in the future.



All the articles on HexaHealth are supported by verified medically-recognized sources such as; peer-reviewed academic research papers, research institutions, and medical journals. Our medical reviewers also check references of the articles to prioritize accuracy and relevance. Refer to our detailed editorial policy for more information.

  1. Implantable Collamer Lens (ICL) Surgery [Internet]. Cleveland Clinic. [cited 2024 Jan 31]. link
  2. Hebebrand K. What to Know About Implantable Collamer Lens (ICL) Surgery? [Internet]. WebMD. [cited 2024 Jan 31]. link
  3. ICL Surgery Procedure, Benefits, Side Effects, and Precautions [Internet]. Healthline. 2020. Available from: link
  4. Zhang H, Gong R, Zhang X, Deng Y. Analysis of perioperative problems related to intraocular Implantable Collamer Lens (ICL) implantation. International Ophthalmology [Internet]. 2022 Jun 22 [cited 2024 Jan 31];42(11):3625–41. link
  5. Packer M. Meta-analysis and review: effectiveness, safety, and central port design of the intraocular collamer lens. Clinical Ophthalmology. 2016 Jun;


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