What Happens During Cataract Surgery?
Cataract surgery is one of—if not the—most commonly carried out surgical procedures in the US each year. However, just because it’s routinely done, if you’re facing such an operation, it certainly isn’t routine for you!
Understanding what happens during cataract surgery can go a long way to helping calm any understandable nerves. Read on to find out more…
Cataracts: treatment options and how it works
- Traditional cataract eye surgery
- Laser cataract eye surgery
Traditional cataract eye surgery
Both traditional cataract surgery and laser cataract surgery are carried out on a day-patient basis, meaning you return home the same day. The eye is numbed, and you usually remain awake throughout either procedure. However, in a small number of cases you might be given a light sedation or, rarely, a general anesthetic.
Both involve making an incision in the cornea of the eye, breaking down the diseased lens, removing it, and replacing it with an artificial lens. This is called an intraocular lens, or IOL.
With traditional cataract surgery, the surgeon uses a tiny scalpel to manually make the incision. A probe is then inserted to gain entry to the capsule that houses the lens. A laser then fractures it into microscopic pieces so it can be suctioned out. The surgeon then places the IOL and closes the incision without the need for stitches. The whole procedure takes anywhere from 10-20 minutes.
Laser cataract eye surgery
The outcome is the same with laser cataract surgery. However, the procedure differs a little. Digital mapping is used to determine the exact anatomy of the eye. A laser is then guided by this information to perform the incision, enter the lens capsule, fracture and remove the lens, and place the IOL.
If necessary, the same laser can be used to treat astigmatism at the same time, reshaping the cornea to improve vision.
There are some advantages to laser cataract surgery.
- It’s faster and more precise
- If you choose to have a premium IOL then the procedure will need to be carried out by this method. This is because the placement of such advanced lenses are paramount for their success
- Astigmatism can be treated concurrently
However, whichever treatment you select, the general outcome is the same: the diseased lens is removed and replaced with an artificial one. The recovery period is the same for both procedures.
There are different types of IOLs. If you have traditional cataract surgery, then you’ll most likely have what’s known as a “monofocal” lens fitted. This allows you to focus either on objects close up or at distance. You’ll be able to choose which you require and then have glasses prescribed to wear for the other aspect of your vision.
Premium IOLs provide the ability to focus at different distances. They include:
- Toric lenses: These correct astigmatism
- Multifocal lenses: They work for both near and far vision, in a similar manner as bi or trifocal glasses. Your prescription will be built into the lens
- Accommodative lenses: These use the muscles of the eye to allow for changes in focus. This allows focusing at all distances
- Extended depth of focus lenses: Known as EDOF, these advanced lenses provide good vision at intermediate and far distance.
The type of lens you choose will ultimately be up to you. Your surgeon will discuss the pros and cons of each, as well as taking your lifestyle and expectations into consideration.
Need More Expert Information on Cataract Eye Surgery? Contact the WBEC Now
The West Boca Eye Center is one of the world’s foremost institutions for all things eyesight and laser surgery related. The lead clinician, Dr. Bellotte, is a globally renowned expert in laser eye procedures. Cataracts treatment is one of his specialties, meaning that his clinic can offer some of the most advanced treatment in the country.
Both traditional and laser cataract surgery are on offer at this academic-grade eye center. Visit https://modern-cataract-surgery-2.webflow.io/services/laser-cataract-surgery to discover more and get in touch today to book an appointment.