Optometrist’s Daughter Gains 20/20 Vision at Fisher-Swale-Nicholson

Last month Lauren Kunkel received the gift of 20/20 vision with Visian ICL here at Fisher-Swale-Nicholson Eye Center, something that despite her optometry background she had not heard of before.

“My biggest fear about Visian ICL was that I didn’t know that much about it and up until this point had not heard much about it at school either,” Kunkel explained.

Kunkel noticed her vision declining from third grade until the middle of high school. She wore glasses and contacts until her eyes could no longer tolerate them.

“For the past five years I couldn’t wear contacts for more than a few hours at a time. In the evening my contacts would literally fall out of my eyes,” Kunkel explained. “My friends used to joke that my eyeballs stopped working whenever my contacts fell out.”

It’s All In the Family

Lauren comes from a family of optometrists. Her parents, doctors Kent and Beth Kunkel, own their own practice, Illinois Valley Eye Care in Spring Valley, IL and Eyesite in Ottawa, IL. Lauren is also currently pursuing her education in optometry, following in her family’s footsteps. She is a second year student at the Illinois College of Optometry in Chicago.

Corneal Tissue Saved, 20/20 Vision Gained With Visian ICL

Lauren made an appointment at Fisher-Swale-Nicholson Eye Center based on the recommendation of one her mother’s patients, who had received Visian ICL from Dr. Swale ten years ago prior.

Originally anticipating Photo Refractive Keratectomy (PRK) (which reshapes the cornea so that light rays can focus more precisely on the retina), Lauren learned that her corneas were too thin to safely performer the procedure. Dr. Swale determined that Lauren would be a better candidate for Visian ICL instead.

Visian ICL is an implantable contact lens that is surgically implanted in front of the natural lens. It’s a great alternative vision correctin procedure to PRK and LASIK because it does not eliminate any corneal tissue and can be removed when the time comes for cataract surgery.

“The day after the procedure I woke up seeing 20/20 and nothing has changed since. There was very little recovery time,” Kunkel explained. “It’s only been a month but it feels like wearing glasses and contacts was a lifetime ago. I couldn’t be happier with my experience!”