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What You Should Know About Cataract Surgery

Posted by on July 18, 2019 in Stuff with 0 Comments

If you’ve booked your Cataract Surgery in NJ and waiting for your appointment, you may be interested in learning more about the surgery. The operation involves replacing a clouded lens and it is effective, quick and low risk.

In the past cataract surgery required patients to stay in hospital and the recovery period was lengthy. These days however the surgery is performed using only local anesthetic and it is an outpatient appointment. This means you’ll be back to your normal day-to-day life within a few days. Complications related to the surgery are low and the success rate is high.

Why you would require cataract surgery

In general, cataracts are a normal part of getting older. Cataracts form steadily over the years and this means that our eyes begin to become less clear. To begin with, you may find that your vision becomes nearsighted and can be corrected using glasses. As cataracts worsen your night vision may be affected and colors can seem cloudier.

An eye doctor will check how sharp your vision is by asking you to categorize letters and symbols that are present on a chart. The interior of your eye may also be examined and your pupils maybe dilate it for this. The eye doctor can use a special lamp to light up a particular area inside the eye to check for cataracts.

When to have the surgery

The best way of curing cataracts is to remove and replace the affected lens with surgery. Having cataracts is not a life threatening so there’s not necessarily a rush to have surgery. Most people have the surgery when they feel that their cataracts are affecting their daily life and their vision. If, however, you have another eye condition as well such as macular degeneration, your eye doctor may suggest that you have cataract surgery as soon as possible if the cataracts make it harder to manage your other eye condition.

If you have cataracts in both of your eyes the doctor will probably operate on the eye that has a thicker cataract first. Once your eye has healed and your vision has improved, you could have surgery on the second eye.

Choosing the lens

The options when it comes to lenses has grown and the most commonly used lenses are:

Fixed focus monofocal lenses

With these lenses, you can see at a distance, but to see up close you’ll probably need reading glasses. If you want detailed, clear vision, these may not be a good choice.

Accommodating monofocal lenses

These lenses can swap between near and far vision. They are an excellent choice for distance compared to near vision. Around half of the people who choose these lenses still need reading glasses.

Toric lenses

These intraocular lenses are designed for those that have astigmatism. As they correct astigmatism, glasses for distance may not be needed after surgery.

Multifocal lenses

These are similar to bifocal or progressive lenses, which are also used in glasses. The biggest downside to these lenses is that they can disfigure bright lights, which can call halos and glare at night.

When it comes to choosing the lens to suit you, there are a few things that you need to consider:

The cost

Standard lenses are usually covered by insurance but if you need a toric lens you can expect to pay around $1500. Some specialized lenses can cost around $3000 each.

Your needs

For the majority of people, the monofocal implant is perfect. This lens provides contrast vision so it’s suitable for activities such as driving. If cataract surgery is being performed on somebody that is young, this lens is also a good option, as contrast vision tends to decrease with age. Do bear in mind that if you choose the monofocal lens, you may still need to wear glasses for distance or for reading. If you prefer not to wear glasses or you do lots of close-up work, it may be better to choose a multifocal lens. This, however, may mean that your vision is not as clear.

The surgery itself

The advances in technology mean that cataract surgery only takes around 15 minutes to perform. The results of the surgery are often long term and it is successful in around 97 to 98% of people, without any complications.

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