Cataract surgery is a method to remove the lens of your eye or to replace it with an artificial lens that happens in most cases. Generally, the lens of your eye is clear. The lens becomes cloudy because of a cataract that eventually affects your vision or blurry it.
Cataract surgery is performed by an Eye specialist (ophthalmologist) on an outpatient basis. Which means you don’t have to stay in the hospital after the surgery. Cataract surgery is a safe and very common procedure these days.
The need for Cataract Surgery:
A blurry vision can occur because of a cataract and it may increase the glare from lights. If a cataract makes it difficult for someone to carry out daily life activities, an ophthalmologist may suggest cataract surgery.
In some cases, when a cataract interrupts the treatment of another eye problem, Cataract surgery may be recommended by ophthalmologists. If a cataract creates problems for your eye doctor to examine the back of your eye to monitor or treat other eye problems such as age-related macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy, your doctors may recommend cataract surgery.
Cataract surgery should be done only when it is required because waiting to have cataract surgery won’t harm your eye. If your vision is still quite good that you can perform daily works without any problem, you may not need cataract surgery for many years, if ever.
Before opting for cataract surgery, keep these questions in mind:
- Can you perform your job without any interruption?
- Can you drive safely?
- Do you have problems reading or watching television?
- Is it difficult to cook, shop, do yard work, climb stairs, or take medications?
- Do vision problems affect your level of independence?
- Are you comfortable seeing bright lights?
Side Effects or Risks:
Complications of cataract surgery are uncommon, and most can be treated easily. Cataract surgery risks include:
- Drooping eyelid
- Dislocation of artificial lens
- Retinal detachment
- Secondary cataract
- Loss of vision
The risk of complications is greater if someone has another eye disease or a serious medical condition. Sometimes, cataract surgery fails to improve vision because of underlying eye damage from other conditions, such as glaucoma or macular degeneration. So before deciding to have cataract surgery, it may be beneficial to evaluate and treat other eye problems.
How to Prepare
Food and medications
Your doctor may instruct you not to eat or drink anything 12 hours before cataract surgery or advise you to temporarily stop taking any medication that could increase your risk of bleeding during the procedure. If you take any medications let your doctor know about it, as some of these drugs can interfere with cataract surgery.
Your doctor may prescribe some antibiotic eyedrops for use one or two days before the surgery.
You can go home on the same day of cataract surgery, but it is suggested you limit your activities, such as bending and lifting, for about a week after your surgery. It is also advised not to drive or to contact bright lights.
What you can expect
Before the procedure
A painless ultrasound test performs by your doctor to measure the size and shape of your eye. The procedure is done a week or so before your cataract surgery, which helps determine the right type of lens implant (intraocular lens, or IOL).
Most of the patients who have cataract surgery will be given IOLs. IOL lenses improve your vision by focusing light on the back of your eye. These lenses can not be seen or feel. No extra care is needed as it becomes a permanent part of your eye.
Cost of Lens:
Different types of IOLs with varied features are available. The cost of cataract eye surgery in India Costs up to 20,000 to 1,20,000 INR depends on the type of lens you choose. Before the surgery procedure, you and your eye doctor will discuss which type of IOL might work best for you and your lifestyle. It should be taken care of that some insurance companies may not pay for all types of lenses.
These lenses are made of plastic, acrylic, or silicone. Some IOLs block ultraviolet light. Some IOLs are made from rigid plastic and implanted through an incision that requires several stitches (sutures) to close.
Though many IOLs are flexible, allowing a smaller incision that requires few or no stitches. Ophthalmologists fold this type of lens and insert it into the empty capsule where the natural lens used to be. Once inside the eye, the folded IOL unfolds, filling the empty capsule.
Types of Lenses:
Some of the types of lenses available include:
- Fixed-focus monofocal: These lenses have a single focus strength for distance vision. Glasses are generally required for reading.
- Accommodating-focus monofocal: These lenses also have a single focusing strength, but they can respond to eye muscle movements and shift focus to near or distant objects.
- Multifocal: These lenses work similarly to glasses with bifocal or progressive lenses. Different areas of the lens have different focusing strengths, allowing for near, medium, and far vision.
- Astigmatism correction (toric): If you have significant astigmatism, a toric lens can help correct your vision.
During the Surgery:
Cataract surgery, usually an outpatient procedure, takes an hour or less to perform. First, your opthalmologist will place eyedrops in your eye to dilate your pupil. Local anesthetics will be given to numb the area, and you may be given a sedative to help you relax.
During cataract surgery, the clouded lens is replaced with a clear artificial lens, though in some cases, a cataract may be removed without implanting an artificial lens.
Surgical methods used to remove cataracts include:
- Using an ultrasound probe to break up the lens for removal: The procedure called phacoemulsification (fak-o-e-mul-sih-fih-KAY-shun). A cataract surgeon makes a tiny incision in the front of your eye (cornea) and inserts a needle-thin probe into the lens substance where the cataract has formed. After it, your surgeon then uses the probe, which transmits ultrasound waves, to break up (emulsify) the cataract and suction out the fragments. The very back of your lens is left intact to serve as a place for the artificial lens to rest. Stitches may be used to close the tiny incision in your cornea after the procedure.
- Making an incision in the eye and removing the lens in one piece: The procedure is called extracapsular cataract extraction used very less in cataract surgeries, it requires a larger incision than that used for phacoemulsification. Through this larger incision, your surgeon uses surgical tools to remove the front capsule of the lens and the cloudy lens comprising the cataract. The very back capsule of your lens is left in place to serve as a place for the artificial lens to rest.
The surgeon may be performed this procedure if you have certain eye complications. With the larger incision, stitches are required.
Once the cataract has been removed by using either of the above procedures, the artificial lens is implanted into the empty lens capsule.
After the procedure
Once the cataract surgery has been done successfully, your vision to begin improving within a few days. Your vision may be blurry at the starting few days as your eye heals and adjusts.
You may seem brighter colors because you are looking through a new, clear lens. A cataract is usually yellow- or brown-tinted before surgery, muting the look of colors.
Itching and mild discomfort are common for a couple of days after surgery. Avoid rubbing or pushing on your eye. You’ll usually visit your eye surgeon a day or two after your surgery, the following week, and then again after about a month to monitor healing.
It may also recommend wearing the eye patch for a few days after your surgery and the protective shield when you sleep during the recovery period.
Some eyedrops and medications prescribed after surgery to prevent infection, reduce inflammation and control eye pressure. After a couple of days, most of the discomfort should disappear. Often, complete healing occurs within eight weeks.
Contact your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following:
- Vision loss
- Pain that persists despite the use of over-the-counter pain medications
- Increased eye redness
- Eyelid swelling
- Light flashes or multiple new spots (floaters) in front of your eye
After cataract surgery, most people need glasses, at least some of the time. Your doctor will let you know when your eyes have healed enough for you to get a final prescription for eyeglasses.
If you have cataracts in both eyes, your doctor usually schedules the second surgery after the first eye has healed.
Cataract surgery successfully corrects vision in the majority of people who have the procedure. After the surgery, patients usually stay in the doctor’s office for about an hour to make sure your eye pressure doesn’t rise.
In some cases, A secondary cataract may develop in the people who’ve had cataract surgery. The medical term for this common complication is known as posterior capsule opacification (PCO).
This happens when the back of the lens capsule — the part of the lens that wasn’t removed during surgery and that now supports the lens implant — becomes cloudy and impairs your vision.
PCO can be treated with a painless, five-minute outpatient procedure called yttrium-aluminum-garnet (YAG) laser capsulotomy. In YAG laser capsulotomy, a laser beam is used to make a small opening in the clouded capsule to provide a clear path through which the light can pass.
Other complications are rare but can include increased eye pressure and retinal detachment.
Where to Get Cataract Surgery in India?
Visitech Eye Centre is the best for Cataract Surgery in Delhi NCR. Visit our hospital or Book an Appointment.