Cataracts are cloudy lenses within our eyes. As we age, the proteins in our lenses become more opaque, causing cloudiness. Cataracts are very common, affecting roughly 60% of people over the age of 60.

It may be time for cataract surgery when vision problems begin to interfere with your daily life. Any number of symptoms could dictate the need for cataract surgery, including:

  • Blurred vision
  • Glare and halos around lights
  • A feeling of “film” over the eye(s)
  • Difficulty reading in ordinary light
  • Sensitivity to bright lights
  • Difficulty driving at night
  • Double vision in one eye
  • Difficulty with color and contrast

Once your vision begins to change as a result of developing cataracts, an increase in your glasses prescription can help maintain your vision temporarily. However, because cataracts are a progressive condition, your vision will continue to worsen and your lens becomes more opaque. Eventually glasses or contact lenses will no longer improve sight.

Cataract Surgery

Many patients consider poor vision an inevitable fact of aging. However, cataract eye surgery is a quick procedure, with minimal discomfort and recovery time. With more than 3 million Americans undergoing the procedure each year, cataract surgery is not only the most frequently performed surgery in the United States; the procedure is very successful in restoring vision.

During cataract surgery, a patient’s lens is removed and replaced with a new Intraocular Lens Implant (IOL). The procedure takes 10-12 minutes per eye, and is performed in an outpatient surgery center. Patients typically return to their normal activities the following day.

Symptoms, Surgery, and Recovery

What to Expect from Cataract Surgery

Any eye surgery can stir up anxiety. But the realities of cataract surgery are sometimes surprising to patients:

  • Surgery is performed one eye at a time, on different days.
  • The eye is numbed with eye drops – no needles!
  • Gentle IV sedation lets patients relax and often doze off for the duration of the surgery.
  • Anesthesia staff monitors your heart rate, breathing, and watches for any discomfort. IV medications are adjusted to help you stay ‘happy’!
  • It usually takes 90 minutes total from walk-in to walk-out.
  • Patients are cleared to leave 10 minutes after the procedure is finished.

The benefits of cataract surgery go beyond improved vision and the ability to return to normal everyday tasks. According to studies done by the American Academy of Ophthalmology, some patients also attain improved sleep, moods and mental capacity.

Before Cataract Surgery

Prior to cataract surgery, one of our physicians will perform a series of tests to measure the curvature of the cornea as well as the size and shape of your eye. These tests enable our physicians to select the best type of IOL with the proper refractive strength.

During Cataract Surgery

During cataract surgery most people do not need to be put to sleep, requiring minimal anesthesia such as numbing drops. Total surgery time usually lasts 10 minutes. You will be given an anesthetic eye drop to numb the nerves in and around your eye. A special instrument known as a lid speculum is used to hold your eye open.

For the cataract surgery itself, a tiny incision is made, the natural clouded lens is removed, and a new lens implant is placed within the eye. Results should be permanent and life-changing.

After Cataract Surgery

After surgery, a shield will be placed over your eye and you will be asked to rest for a short time. Since it is not recommended that you drive home after your surgery, we recommend having someone to drive you home. Our eye doctors will also prescribe special eye drops to speed your recovery and to control inflammation and prevent infection after surgery. Most patients return to their normal activities the very next day with complete healing occurring after 6 weeks.

While you can return to your normal activities, you may experience some blurriness and notice that colors are brighter. Within a few months after receiving a new IOL, these issues should go away.

YAG Capsulotomy

Approximately one in four patients who have cataract surgery will develop cloudiness on the back of the newly implanted lens. This generally occurs within 5 years after surgery and there’s no way to predict who will develop this cloudiness. If this issue does happen, our physicians can easily correct the problem with an in-office procedure known as a YAG posterior capsulotomy. A surgical laser is used to create an opening in the clouded capsule, allowing light to pass through to the retina.

Grandfather and granddaughter walking on winter beach
Precise and Simple Procedures

Why Choose Milan Eye Center

We are proudly labeled as the ‘Doctor’s Doctors’, meaning Milan Eye Center surgeons often find themselves treating and operating on the eyes of other doctors and their families that entrust us with their vision and ocular health.

Our surgeons are Fellowship trained and Board Certified in cataract surgery. Often we take on complex cataract surgeries for patients that have been turned away elsewhere. In addition to our laser cataract surgery offering, our surgeons are always evaluating new technologies in the marketplace for safety and efficacy. Only the best and proven technology is utilized for our patients.

Affordability

Though traditional cataract surgery is a medically covered procedure (bladeless is an additional cost), patients may have a choice of advanced technology IOLs to enhance their visual function after surgery. The different IOL choices have varied out-of-pocket costs. If you’re a candidate for any of the advanced IOLs, your surgeon will discuss their implications.

Milan Eye Center offers zero-down financing options with approved credit through Wells Fargo, CareCredit, and Alphaeon. We also accept all FSA/HSA plans.

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Resource: Definitive Guide to Cataract Surgery

It’s the right time for clearer vision

Our knowledgeable staff is here to answer all your questions about which procedure is best for you, and ensure you have the most comfortable experience possible. Make an appointment today at one of our seven convenient locations.

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