The thought of undergoing cataract surgery can be daunting for some, but with the right information and appropriate expectations, this procedure can be quick and easy. Cataract surgery is an integral part of one’s overall visual health as we reach an older age, as it can help to improve visual acuity and for some even eliminate one’s dependency on glasses.
Before deciding to have cataract surgery, it’s important to discuss all of your questions with your ophthalmologist. However, even after in-depth meetings with him or her, there may still be some anticipation around the procedure. Here’s what you should know before your surgery as it pertains to what happens during the procedure and considerations for follow-up care.
Visiting Our Office
Prior to your appointment, it’s recommended that patients take some time to make specific plans to ensure their surgery has the best possible outcome with minimal stress. It’s best to have a friend or family member drive you to the office, as you’re encouraged to rest after the procedure. It’s also recommended that you arrive ahead of time to complete any necessary paperwork, ask any additional questions, and relax a bit before your surgery. In all, most patients end up spending about two hours of their day in the office.
During the Surgery
On the surface, cataract surgery might sound frightening, but in reality, it’s an advanced type of procedure that allows your vision to be dramatically improved in a quick and easy way. Medication will be administered to you in several methods, including intravenously and through eye drops, to help numb the eye and aid in relaxation.
A small incision will be made by the ophthalmologist using either a blade or a laser, allowing him or her to access the clouded lens in your eye. This lens is removed and replaced with an artificial lens, allowing you to regain clear vision once again. The type of lens inserted will be determined ahead of time based upon your current prescription and the day to day activities you engage in. Cataract surgery only takes roughly 15 to 30 minutes per eye, and your ophthalmologist will ensure that you are comfortable during the entire process.
While the idea of a new clear lens in your eye would make it seem as if your vision is perfectly restored right away, it actually takes around two weeks for healing to occur. During this time, your vision will slowly improve and it’s normal to experience some slight discomfort. Regular follow-up visits will be completed in order to ensure you are healing properly.
Compared to many other surgeries, cataract surgery isn’t quite as complicated and certainly doesn’t require a ton of downtime afterward, but it’s important to limit some activities while you heal. For two weeks, patients should refrain from exercising, swimming, and lifting anything over 35 pounds. Eye makeup shouldn’t be worn for at least one week after surgery either.
If you have further questions about cataract surgery, contact our office today. This procedure can add immense value to your life and is relatively quick and easy!