3 Things to Know About Cataract Surgery

Posted on: 16 February 2016

If you have recently gone to your optometrist for an eye exam and they said you have cataracts, you may want to get surgery. Cataracts can severely limit your vision, but it might be fixable. Here are some things to know about cataract surgery so you are fully prepared.

There Are Different Types of Cataract Surgery Methods

One thing to note is that depending on your surgeon and severity of the cataracts, the surgical method may vary. The first is called an extracapsular extraction. This is when the surgeon makes an incision in the lens and removes the lens manually. Another type of procedure that can be performed on cataracts is a phacoemulsification. This is when the surgeon breaks up the lens before removing it by using an ultrasound probe after making a small incision in the cornea. The ultrasound waves are what help to break up the cataracts, prior to being suctioned out. An artificial lens is then put in its place.

It is a Quick Procedure

Cataract surgery is an outpatient procedure that is often complete in a matter of minutes, unless there are complications. However, you will not be able to return home immediately after the procedure is performed. You may be a little groggy and have blurry vision, so you will be asked to move to a recovery room until you start becoming more aware after waking up from the anesthesia. You should have someone with you who is able to drive you home. When you are on the way home, make sure you wear the sunglasses you were given, as they help to protect your eyes from the bright sunlight.

Your Vision Doesn't Improve Immediately

For the first few hours or days after the procedure, you will likely have some blurry vision. Your vision will likely come back gradually instead of all at once. Do not be alarmed if it is happening slower than you expected. You need to give the intraocular lens time to adjust and for your vision to return. You may see blackness or blurriness at first, followed by a period of slight distortions or wavy lines in your vision. This should eventually subside. During your post-surgical examination, let your eye doctor know if you are still concerned by the vision you experience after cataract surgery.

The sooner you have the cataracts removed, the better your vision will be after the procedure. This is why it is important to keep going to your eye doctor for regular examinations to find signs of cataracts early.