Keratoconus Patient Education

Intacs® FAQs

What are Intacs®?

Intacs® are clear, thin inserts placed in the outer edge of the cornea, which reshapes its curvature causing a flattening effect without removing any corneal tissue. They are designed to normalize the shape of the cornea and allow for contact lenses to be worn more comfortably. They are no more visible than a contact lens, and can be removed or replaced if needed, although this is uncommon.

Intacs® are clear, thin inserts placed in the outer edge of the cornea to reshape its curvature without removing any corneal tissue.

Will Intacs® cure my Keratoconus or ectasia?

No. Currently, there is not a cure for Keratoconus or Ectasia. Intacs® simply allow us to normalize the curvature of your cornea to potentially allow for contact lens wear, to make contacts more tolerable and prevent or delay the need for corneal transplantation.

Is the Intacs® procedure approved by the FDA?

Yes, Intacs® were approved by the FDA in July 2004 as a humanitarian device for the treatment of Keratoconus. A humanitarian device is a device that is approved by the FDA that is used for fewer than 4,000 patient procedures per year with rare medical conditions.

Intacs® are an FDA approved humanitarian device.

Who is a candidate for Intacs®?

Patients who are good candidates for Intacs®:

  • Have been diagnosed with Keratoconus or Ectasia
  • Do not have central corneal scarring
  • Do not have too thin or too steep/flat corneas
  • Are not pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Are 21 years or older
  • Are seeking to avoid corneal transplant surgery to improve functional vision

For precision and safety, nJoy Vision only offers access to the laser-assisted method for Intacs® procedures.

How are Intacs® placed into the eye?

The Intacs® are inserted into a small channel that is created in the middle of the cornea. There are two different ways to make these channels: manual and laser-assisted. The manual method uses a mechanical device that separates the corneal tissue and relies on the skill of the surgeon. The laser-assisted method used to create the channels is extremely precise, and its settings are customized for each eye. The safety and benefits of the laser are why nJoy Vision only offers access to the laser-assisted method.

How long does the Intacs® procedure take?

The entire procedure should take less than 20 minutes. Plan on being at the center for about 2 hours the day of your procedure, and arrange for a driver to take you home.