Myopia - Nearsightedness Treatment


"I have really high myopia (-19D in left eye and -20D in right eye) and have used hard contacts until now - unfortunately I’ve developed an intolerance towards them. I've never heard of anyone with myopia this high and I'm really worried about my treatment options. Do you have any input or useful information?" - Cassie

Dear Cassie,

You're not alone, about 42% of adults also suffer from severe myopia in the United States. Since hard contacts no longer work for you, a few alternatives for patients with high myopia include switching to eyeglasses or getting an eye procedure.

Jennifer Puno, the co-founder of and, was a patient who was able to find her premier eye correction option through getting the ICL procedure.

What is the EVO ICL (EVO)?

The EVO ICL, or Implantable Collamer® Lenses are approved as a myopia treatment on patients for moderate to severe myopia. If you haven’t already looked into EVO ICL, it’s worth researching to see if it’s right for you. These surgically-implanted Collamer lenses come in powers as high as -15D and treat up to -20D, which could provide a real boost to your vision.

It's important to see high myopia treatment through:

  • A consultation with an ophthalmologist
  • Refractive Surgery
Types of Myopia

Ranging from mild to severe myopia, its effects on your vision also ranges on how much it impacts your day to day life. There are various types and “levels” of myopia which people may experience throughout their lifetime.

Age on-set myopia explains the various “levels” of nearsightedness we may experience as we go through our daily activities. It’s classified in four categories: infancy youth, early adult, and late adult. This simply states that there’s a normal amount of nearsightedness a large majority of people experience that can be due to the environment we’re surrounded by.

Induced myopia is due to an exposure to various chemical agents or drastic changes in one’s blood sugar levels. This type of myopia is often temporary and reversible, if identified early on.

Pathological myopia causes for prominent changes in one’s eye due to the continual elongation of the shape of the eyeball. This can lead to issues such as retinal detachment, glaucoma, or a build-up of fluid in the eye.

What can the EVO ICL treat?

Study after study has shown EVO ICL to be a premier choice compared to LASIK and similar refractive myopia surgical procedures. Designed for patients age 21-45 with stable vision, EVO ICL is ideal for patients with -3 to -20 diopters. If you happen to have astigmatism, the EVO Toric ICL can treat astigmatism up to 4 diopters and myopia up to -16 diopters. This can be done in a simple procedure that takes typically 20 - 30 minutes.

Why Not Just get LASIK?

We spoke to Dr. James J. Salz, clinical professor of Ophthalmology at the University of Southern California about this very issue. He said, “Patients who are above -10 diopters or -11 diopters (which is considered severe myopia) often can't get enough correction with a LASIK procedure.” Salz also added that LASIK simply isn’t for everyone. Anyone with severely dry eyes, as well as specific corneal diseases and other conditions are generally not good LASIK candidates since they may not qualify for LASIK.

Patient Satisfaction

"My vision was so bad the army wouldn't accept me," says Christiaan Rollich, who was severely nearsighted. For Rollich, not wearing glasses or contacts meant not seeing at all. "If I took out my contacts, I wouldn't be able identify anybody in the room, no matter how close they were."

Now, however, Rollick has ICL implants for his high myopia and raves about the impact it’s had on his life.

"It's the best money I ever spent, now I have really clear vision. I can do anything I want now. I surf, I do Thai boxing,” she said. “It's really amazing."

More Stories from EVO ICL Patients:
- Phil Torres (Entomologist, TV Show Host)
- Eve Torres Gracie (Jiu Jitsu Instructor, Former WWE Diva, Mom)
- Sara Tso (Chef)


To find a certified EVO ICL doctor, click here.

Important Safety Information

The EVO Visian ICL Lens is intended for the correction of moderate to high nearsightedness. EVO Visian ICL and EVO Visian TICL surgery is intended to safely and effectively correct nearsightedness between -3.0 D to -15.0 D, the reduction in nearsightedness up to -20.0 D and treatment of astigmatism from 1.0 D to 4.0 D. If you have nearsightedness within these ranges, EVO Visian ICL surgery may improve your distance vision without eyeglasses or contact lenses. Because the EVO Visian ICL corrects for distance vision, it does not eliminate the need for reading glasses, you may require them at some point, even if you have never worn them before.

Implantation of the EVO Visian ICL is a surgical procedure, and as such, carries potentially serious risks. Please discuss the risks with your eye care professional. Complications, although rare, may include need for additional surgical procedures, inflammation, loss of cells from the back surface of the cornea, increase in eye pressure, and cataracts.

You should NOT have EVO Visian ICL surgery if:

  • Your doctor determines that the shape of your eye is not an appropriate fit for the EVO Visian ICL
  • You are pregnant or nursing
  • You have moderate to severe damage to the optic nerve caused by increased pressure (glaucoma)
  • You do not meet the minimum endothelial cell density for your age at the time of implantation as determined by your eye doctor
  • Your vision is not stable as determined by your eye doctor

Before considering EVO Visian ICL surgery you should have a complete eye examination and talk with your eye care professional about EVO Visian ICL surgery, especially the potential benefits, risks, and complications. You should discuss the time needed for healing after surgery. For additional information with potential benefits, risks and complications please visit



1. Packer M. The Implantable Collamer Lens with a central port: review of the literature. Clin Ophthalmol. 2018;12:2427-2438.

2. Martínez-Plaza E, López-Miguel A, López-de la Rosa A, et al. Effect of the EVO+ Visian Phakic Implantable Collamer Lens on Visual Performance and Quality of Vision and Life, Am J Ophthalmol 2021;226:117-125.

3. Packer M. Evaluation of the EVO/EVO+ Sphere and Toric Visian ICL: Six month results from the United States Food and Drug Administration clinical trial. Clinical Ophthalmology. 2022;16:1541-53.

4. Parkhurst GD. A prospective comparison of phakic collamer lenses and wavefront-optimized laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis for correction of myopia. Clin Ophthalmol. 2016;10:1209-1215.

5. Ganesh S, Brar S, Pawar A. Matched population comparison of visual outcomes and patient satisfaction between 3 modalities for the correction of low to moderate myopic astigmatism. Clin Ophthalmol. 2017;11:1253-1263.

6. Naves J.S, Carracedo G, Cacho-Babillo I, Diadenosine nucleotid measurements as dry-eye score in patients after LASIK and ICL surgery. Presented at American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (ASCRS) 2012.

7. Shoja, MR. Besharati, MR. Dry eye after LASIK for myopia: Incidence and risk factors. European Journal of Ophthalmology. 2007; 17(1): pp. 1-6.

8. Lee, Jae Bum et al. Comparison of tear secretion and tear film instability after photorefractive keratectomy and laser in situ keratomileusis. Journal of Cataract & Refractive Surgery , Volume 26 , Issue 9 , 1326 - 1331.

9. Parkhurst, G. Psolka, M. Kezirian, G. Phakic intraocular lens implantantion in United States military warfighters: A retrospective analysis of early clinical outcomes of the Visian ICL. J Refract Surg. 2011;27(7):473-481.

*American Refractive Surgery Council

We get it. Decisions like this take time to consider and research. We can help guide your decision with information that's the most relevant to you.

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