Are You Awake For Cataract Surgery? 

Cataract surgery can be a daunting thought. Allowing someone to operate on your eye isn’t something that many people can be blasé about, even if you’re aware that it’s probably the most commonly carried out surgical procedure in the world!

One of the most common questions asked is whether you’re awake for the operation. The short answer to this is yes—in most cases, it’s carried out under a local anesthetic, rather than a general (when you’re put to sleep).

While this might sound worrying, it’s not as bad as it might seem. Read on to understand more about cataract eye surgery and why, afterward, you’ll likely wonder what it was you were worried about…

Cataract Eye Surgery: your questions answered

  • How is cataract eye surgery performed?
  • What is the recovery period for cataract eye surgery?
  • Will I feel anything during cataract eye surgery?

How is cataract eye surgery performed? 

Cataract surgery is carried out using one of two methods: traditional cataract surgery and laser cataract surgery. Both have the same result—to remove the diseased lens that causes vision reduction or loss and replace it with an artificial lens. 

The former is done manually, with the surgeon making a small incision in the cornea with a scalpel. A probe is then inserted into the lens capsule and either soundwaves or a laser is used to break down the lens. This is suctioned out and replaced with the artificial lens. 

Laser cataract surgery, as the name suggests, is wholly done using a laser. The eye is digitally mapped, and the information guides the laser to perform the operation. One advantage is that any astigmatism can be carried out concurrently. The placement of the lens is highly precise—if you choose to have an advanced, or premium, lens fitted, then this will be the method used.

What is the recovery period for cataract eye surgery?

The vast majority of cataract surgeries are performed on a day surgery basis, meaning you return home the same day. The procedure itself takes around 15—20 minutes. You’ll be fitted with an eye dressing that you’ll have to wear constantly for around 24 hours and while you sleep for the next few days. 

Recovery is remarkably quick. Many people report better vision within hours of surgery. However, it tends to take around 6 weeks or so for the full results to be achieved. You’ll have to take it easy for a few days and take care not to carry out any strenuous activities for the few weeks post-surgery. There might be mild discomfort for a few days that can be treated with eye drops and/or over-the-counter pain relief. 

Will I feel anything during cataract eye surgery?

Before the surgery, your eye will be numbed with anesthetic eye drops. You might also be given light sedation if your surgeon considers it necessary. A special instrument is placed over the eye to prevent you from blinking during the procedure. While this might feel a bit strange, you won’t experience any pain throughout.

Want to Know More About Cataract Eye Surgery: Contact the West Boca Eye Center

The West Boca Eye Center is one of the most advanced facilities in the US, offering cutting-edge cataract surgery treatments that are often not available elsewhere. This is largely due to its founder and lead clinician’s passion for all things cataract-related. Brent Bellotte MD. has dedicated his professional career to advancing the surgical options available for the treatment of cataracts and has been pivotal in bringing them to the mainstream.

It’s this expertise that sees people traveling from across the nation and even from overseas to avail themselves of skill and cataract treatment options. 

Want to find out more? Visit and get in touch with the friendly WBEC team today.