A: Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) is a surgical procedure that replaces your eye’s clear natural lens with an artificial intraocular lens (IOL). The lens changes the eye’s focusing power, thus inserting an artificial lens corrects refractive error, including both nearsightedness and farsightedness. RLE also provides the dual advantage of preventing the need for future cataract surgery, as an artificial lens is not susceptible to cataracts.