Everything You Need to Know About Cataract Surgery

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cataract surgery

A cataract occurs when the eye’s lens becomes clouded which causes a defect in the person’s vision. Symptoms range from having the blurred vision to finding difficulty to see at night.  It is a common disorder among the elderly. In the UK alone, it is estimated that 30% of people 65 years and above have a cataract in one or both eyes which causes impairment in vision. Fortunately, Pembroke Pines eye care provider offers corrective surgery exists which tend to not only restore vision caused by the cataract but also reduce the person’s dependence to wearing corrective eyewear altogether.

What is Cataract Surgery?

Cataract surgery is one of the leading corrective procedures to treat a cataract. It involves the removal of the clouded lens and replacement with an artificial lens. Since it is a generally safe and common operation, those who would undergo the procedure are usually outpatients. It is no wonder that roughly 10% of people with a cataract choose to undergo the procedure. In the US, more than 3 million cataract surgeries are performed every year and this number is expected to increase with the rise of the aging population.

Aside from its popularity, the surgery comes into essence to rid the patient of the difficulties caused by the cataract. It is also a required procedure when the cataract interferes with the treatment of more severe eye problems. Doctors may recommend the procedure when the cataract interferes with the examination of other parts of the eye to check for other conditions such as diabetic retinopathy or macular degeneration.

In line with this, the optometrist will conduct a comprehensive exam on the patient first prior to the surgery to check for the eye’s overall health. This must be done so that the patient is informed of any possible risks of proceeding with the operation. To gauge the correct power of Intraocular Lens (IOL) best suited for the patient, the doctor will also perform a refraction to determine cornea curvature and eye length. IOLs are powerful enough to correct even other eye problems of the patient such as astigmatism.  Adjusting the IOL’s power to give the user a monovision correction can even reduce dependence on corrective eyewear.

Cataract Surgery Methods

For the surgery itself, many methods are available to remove the infected lens. Modern cataract procedures utilize a high-frequency ultrasound device which will cause the clouded lens to disintegrate. Phacoemulsification is also another method done by performing small incisions to remove the lens. The pieces of the lens can be removed through suction. After lens removal, the surgeon implants the IOL and closes the incision through stitches. The procedure can last from 15-90 minutes depending on the amount of time needed to prepare the patient.

Precautions after Surgery   

The patient is instructed to take a few precautionary steps after surgery such as wearing protective eye shield and avoiding strenuous activities for at least a week. In most cases, the eye heals perfectly, and the patient can proceed with daily activities aided by their improved vision.

Despite cataract surgery being a simple operation, it is not a perfect one.  Complications after surgery may range from inflammation, infection, to dislocation of the artificial lens. Nevertheless, these post-surgery complications are uncommon and can be treated easily. Risks of complication can arise if the person is afflicted with other eye diseases aside from the cataract.

Final Words

Cataract surgery is one of the many breakthroughs of modern medicine which has helped a significant number of people already. Consider having the procedure if you develop a cataract to rid yourself of the vision problems caused by this condition.