An operation which clips artificial lenses inside the eyes gives better result than laser surgery, say British experts.

The experts believe that this treatment for short-sightedness could become popular in the future.

The operation involves the insertion of a thin plastic lens, called phakic intraocular lenses(IOLs) inside the eye, either behind the pupil or in front of the iris.

Laser surgery, by contrast, cuts away part of the cornea.

Allon Barsam, who led the study at Moorfields Eye Hospital in London says that the findings suggest that IOLs are safer than laser surgery.

The research looked at three trials, involving 132 patients, comparing the two types of operation.

A year after the surgery, both treatments produced the same percentage of patients who had 20/20 vision without glasses.

However, patients who had the lens treatment had clearer corrected vision when they wore glasses as well as better sensitivity to contrast.

The researchers are calling for more research on the risks and effects of long term use of IOLs.

The finding were published by the respected Cochrane Library.