Most people develop a cataract as they age. Cataract surgery is indicated when you feel your day to day activities are limited due to poor quality vision. Many patients notice trouble with driving initially when a cataract begins to interfere with their vision. You may notice improvements in some of the common symptoms of cataracts listed below:
to improve the quality of your vision
to decrease halos
to decrease glare
to decrease light sensitivity
to improve contrast sensitivity
to improve night vision
to make images brighter/less dull
to decrease dependence on glasses
Risks of Cataract Surgery
In general, cataract surgery is a relatively low risk surgery to your overall health. Most patients have successful cataract surgery with no complications. No surgery is free of possible risks. The possible risks of cataract surgery are primarily within the eye. These risks include but are not limited to the items listed below.
risk of an eye infection
risk of needing a second operation to completely remove the cataract, possibly performed by the cataract surgery or possible performed by a retinal surgeon
risk of swelling in the central vision (cystoid macular edema)
risk of swelling of the cornea that may be persistent
risk of a retinal detachment
risk of a leaky wound
risk of blindness (rare)
risk of needing to exchange the lens implant
risk of needing glasses for distance, intermediate and near activities after surgery
risk of halos and trouble driving at night especially if certain implants are used
risk of difficulty tolerating the difference in the glasses prescription between the two eyes, especially if surgery is intended on only one eye
Dr. Stanley Grandon and I will have a lengthy discussion with you regarding the potential risk and benefits of your cataract operation. We will spend the time necessary to answer all of your questions. You will need to sign an informed consent prior to your cataract surgery.
If you have additional questions or concerns about the risks and benefits of cataract surgery feel free to leave a comment.
We ask you to instill drops for the 3 days prior to your surgical date. One of the drops is an antibiotic and the other is an anti inflammatory drop. You typically cannot eat or drink for several hours before the operation. When you arrive at the Dearborn Surgical Center, we ask that you bring a driver with you.
When you arrive at the surgical center you will be asked to change into a gown. You will receive medication to dilate the pupils and be seen by the anesthesia staff. During the operation you will feel no pain. You will receive sedation to make you comfortable. In most cases, surgery is performed without a numbing injection. Surgery usually takes less than 20 minutes.
After your Cataract Surgery
After your cataract surgery you can expect the vision to be a bit blurry as the eye heals and adjusts. Most of the time cataract surgery does not require a bandage. It is normal to feel a scratchy or foreign body sensation in the eye. Dr. Stanley Grandon and I will have you continue the antibiotic drop, the anti inflammatory drop and we will add a steroid drop. It is very important to continue to use these drops as directed after your operation for the eye to heal properly.
Post Op Visits
You can expect to come in for a check up to our office the day after your operation. We ask you to bring your drops with you for that visit. Most day to day activities can be resumed immediately. You will then return to our office approximately one week after your operation and then at one month. If necessary, we can perform surgery on your other eye 1-2 weeks after the first eye as long as the first eye is healing well. A prescription for new glasses (if necessary) will be given at your one month post op visit.
If you have been previously diagnosed with a cataract or if you feel you are experiencing blurry vision, a comprehensive eye examination is important. The examination can determine if the cataract is the source of your visual complaints. If the cataract is the source of your complaints, we can complete a cataract evaluation and discuss with you the option of cataract surgery.
Most people develop a cataract as they get older. Cataract surgery is recommended when the cataract is interfering with your day to day activities. Patients may experience difficulty driving especially at night or in the rain and bright sunlight.
A comprehensive eye examination involves checking your visual acuity, refracting to see if new eyeglasses can improve your vision, a slit lamp examination and a dilated examination. Dr. Stanley Grandon and I will also take a comprehensive medical history. This is done to assess for any conditions that would increase the risk of a problem during cataract surgery.
If the cataract if the cause of your visual complaints, Dr. Stanley Grandon and I will discuss with you the risks and benefits of cataract surgery as part of the cataract evaluation. We will take the time to discuss implant options with you. For example, if you have astigmatism you may be a candidate for a toric implant to correct the astigmatism. If you have a desire to be less dependent on glasses for near activities, you may be a candidate for a presbyopic implant that allows some vision for near and intermediate activities.
Scheduling Cataract Surgery
If you decide to schedule the cataract operation, we will take measurements to determine the implant type and power to use. The entire cataract evaluation can take approximately 2 hours time. You will read and sign informed consent paperwork. Our surgical schedulers will provide prescriptions for drops to be used before and after cataract surgery. They will go over all of the details of what to expect the day of your operation. You will need to have a driver bring you to the Dearborn Surgical Center on the day of your surgery.