Before having any kind of procedure, it is a good idea to gain a sufficient understanding of the process. This will ensure that you and your surgeon are on the same page, eliminating any potential doubts or questions.
Although the thought of cataract surgery can be scary and overwhelming, it is extremely safe and effective, as millions of surgeries are performed every year. According to the Ophthalmology Times, in the United States, some 9,000 ophthalmic surgeons were performing 3.6 million cataract surgeries in 2015 and those numbers have increased every year. Can you imagine how many procedures were performed in 2019?
So not only are these surgeries safe but they are extremely successful as a quick outpatient operation that will restore the vision loss due to the clouding of the lens. So if you are considering cataract surgery, keep reading to get a glimpse into what you can expect before, during, and after your surgery.
Before your surgery, your eyes will be examined externally and internally. This will include a typical eye exam that is done with a light but may also include a laser scan of the eye or an ultrasound examination of the inside of your eye. These tests will determine the health of your eye if any other conditions are present, and the best type of lens implant for you.
Choosing a lens implant may be part of the preparation process once you have decided to have your cataracts removed. Your physician will work with you to select the best lens for your specific condition.
During this time you will want to plan ahead for the day of your surgery. Be sure to arrange for transportation to and from the surgery center as it won’t be safe to drive for 24 hours because of anesthesia. Some other things you may want to do to prepare include:
- Ask your doctor any questions and talk about any current medications you may be taking.
- Do not eat or drink past midnight (unless otherwise instructed by your doctor).
- Get a good night’s sleep the night before.
- Pre-cook your meals so you don’t have stress about food as you heal.
- Schedule some days off of work.
The first step of the surgery begins with the doctor dilating your pupils. You will receive a local anesthetic to numb the area or be given a mild sedative to help you relax. During the surgery itself, the clouded lens is removed and replaced with a clear artificial lens. There are various methods for the actual procedure that is dependent upon your surgeon, but most surgeries are completed using an ultrasound probe, or advanced laser technique. Once the cloudy lens is removed, the artificial lens is implanted.
According to Harvard Health, you will spend two to three hours at the surgical facility. The procedure itself lasts approximately 30 minutes. Afterward, the surgeon may cover the eye with a bandage or shield, which can be removed later that day or on the following day. You will recuperate in the recovery area for about 30 minutes, and then will receive instructions on how to care for your eye
Recovery time is typically one or two days, but every person is unique and your healing experience will depend on the underlying health of your eye and the ease of your surgery. That’s why it is imperative to plan regularly scheduled visits for your surgeon and technician to monitor your progress. Blurry or foggy vision is typical immediately after surgery, and your eyes may feel a little sore or gritty. These symptoms will improve, and irritation will lessen within a few days.
Cataract surgery is safe and effective, and at Cataract Consultants, we make the process as painless as possible.
You don’t have to continue suffering from cataracts, complete our simple online contact form today and let’s get you scheduled for an evaluation.