About Cataract Surgery
Cataract surgery is considered one of the safest and most effective of all medical procedures.
The virtually painless procedure usually takes 15-30 minutes or less. The surgeon makes a small incision in the cornea and removes the cloudy lens (cataract). The new lens (IOL) is then inserted into its permanent position.
The most advanced type of surgical procedure – – is called phacoemulsification, which does not require stitches in most cases. With this advanced technique the affected lens is removed and replaced with an IOL. Clear vision is restored and the eye heals rapidly.
Cataract surgery is almost always highly successful. Many patients find that their visual improvement begins immediately and they can often resume normal activities within hours after surgery. Some find their vision better than ever after the procedure, while others may need to wear glasses for reading and other activities.
During the initial healing period there may be a few limitations on strenuous activities, but most people can return to normal life quickly. If you choose to have a premium lens implanted, you will have the benefit of improved distance and near vision. This lens will further reduce your dependency on glasses. Your doctor can help you determine if you are a candidate for this type of lens.
Of course, there is some risk with any surgery, and a perfect result, no matter how likely, cannot be guaranteed. Make sure you discuss the surgery in detail with your doctor, and have all of your questions answered. At Mid Ohio Eye, we welcome and encourage all patient questions.
How to Prepare for your Cataract Evaluation
Your preliminary appointment at Mid Ohio Eye will include a comprehensive eye exam, diagnostic testing and medical history review. We will walk you through the procedure and make sure all your questions are answered. You and your doctor will decide on which intraocular lens (IOL) implant is right for you and your lifestyle. You will be given prescriptions for eye drops that you will begin taking before surgery.
The Surgery: What to expect
The typical cataract surgery lasts 20 to 30 minutes and the entire process that day takes just a few hours. Only one eye is operated on at a time. The entire procedure is performed on an outpatient basis. You will need to arrange for someone to be with you and to drive you home from the surgery center.
Your eye will be anesthetized and you will receive a mild sedative so you will stay relaxed and comfortable during your procedure, but you won’t be put to sleep. Our surgeons use minimally invasive state of the art technology and micro-incision techniques. During this procedure (phacoemulsification), using an ultrasonic hand piece, the cataract is removed from the eye and an IOL is folded, delivered through a small incision, unfolded and fixed into position inside the eye. Most of the time, no stitches are needed. Your eye will be patched. And you will be taken to the recovery area.
After the surgery
It is time to enjoy your newly restored vision! Your doctor will prescribe a personalized recovery schedule and specific instructions. You will be prescribed medications to put in your eye based on this schedule. You typically will return for a follow-up the next day, one week, three to four weeks and three to six months after surgery to make sure your eye is healing properly.
Posterior Capsule Opacity – A Common Occurrence after Cataract Surgery.
Sometimes after cataract surgery, the capsular bag which one held the cataract becomes hazy. This is call posterior casule opacification or PCO. It is sometimes called a “secondary cataract” although it is not really a cataract. Once a cataract is removed, it does not come back.
PCO occurs in about 20 percent of patients. This can happen right after cataract surgery or even months later. The symptoms of PCO are similar to those of a cataract, including blurred vision and difficulty with glare.
Treating Posterior Capsule Opacity-YAG capsulotomy
Fortunately, a YAG laser can treat posterior capsule opacity safely, effectively and painlessly in the office. It is normal to have floaters after the procedure. These typically resolve within weeks. Vision is usually improved within a day.