Purpose: A subset of children with high ametropia and neurobehavioral disorders have chronic difficulties with spectacle or contact lens wear. We report the results of refractive surgery in a series of these children treated using bilateral or unilateral phakic intraocular lenses (IOLs) for ametropia >10 D. Methods: Clinical course and outcome data were collated prospectively in a group of 12 children (mean age, 10.1 years; range, 4-17 years) with neurobehavioral disorders exacerbated by poor compliance with spectacles. Myopia in 18 eyes ranged from -10.0 to -22.75 D (mean, -15.2 D) and in 2 hyperopic eyes from +10.25 to +10.75 (mean, +10.5 D). Goal refraction was approximately 0 to +1 D. Correction was achieved by implantation of an iris-enclaved phakic IOL under general anesthesia. Mean follow-up was 9.1 months (range, 3-15 months). Results: Myopia correction averaged 14.5 D and hyperopia correction 9.4 D. Eighty-six percent of eyes (17/20 eyes) were corrected to within ± 1 D of emmetropia and the remaining 14% (3 eyes) to within ± 2 D. Uncorrected visual acuity improved substantially in all 20 eyes (60-fold; from a mean of 20/3400 to a mean of 20/57). Ocular comorbidities in each child accounted for residual postoperative, subnormal visual acuity (eg, amblyopia, nystagmus, albinism, regressed retinopathy of prematurity). Visual functions (measured using a 23-item validated survey) improved. One eye required IOL exchange; no other clinically significant complications have been encountered. Conclusions: Phakic IOL implantation improves visual function substantially in neurobehaviorally impaired children who have high ametropia and difficulties wearing glasses.