Surgery is never a fun experience, but some procedures are definitely better experiences than others. One of the easiest surgeries to undergo is cataract-removal surgery.
The entire procedure takes about 15 minutes to complete with minimal preparation time in advance. The recovery is the hardest part of the procedure, as is the case with most procedures.
But it is a simple procedure to undergo and relatively non-invasive. Keep reading to learn more about what having cataract surgery is like!
Preparing for Surgery
There is minimal prep to be done before the surgery on the day of. You will need to avoid wearing makeup, perfumes, or facial lotion on the day of.
These can all cause irritation or lead to potential infection. Plan for a ride home before the day of the surgery, as you won’t be able to safely drive yourself for at least 24 hours. You should also plan on arriving at our Livingston, NJ office early to finish up any paperwork.
Once you are in the chair, numbing eye drops will be applied to your eye. These drops contain a strong anesthetic that blocks out all pain. You will hardly feel anything during the surgery, except for some brief discomfort as a flap is created on your cornea.
Creating the Flap
Associates in Ophthalmology is proud to be one of the first eye care practices in New Jersey to offer laser cataract surgery using the Catalys Precision Laser System. Using a laser, your surgeon will create a circular flap in the cornea so they can access the lens through the pupil.
But the job isn’t quite that simple. Even with your pupil dilated, the lens wouldn’t be able to fit through. Instead, the surgeon breaks the lens apart.
One of the advantages of the Catalys system is that it makes it easier to break down cataracts by softening them first. The remaining pieces are then removed with gentle suction.
The next step is to insert a replacement lens. This preselected device is called an intraocular lens, or IOL.
IOLs can be as simple as a lens that gives you the basic function of sight, while needing glasses to see at the full range of vision, to premium options that may give you vision better than you’ve ever had. Premium options are, of course, more expensive, but many people find the benefits to be worth the extra cost.
Whichever IOL you end up choosing, the process is more or less the same. The IOL is inserted into the membrane that housed your natural lens and the corneal flap is closed.
There are no stitches or medical glue involved. The tissue simply attaches over a short period of time. You should get some rest in the office before you get a ride home, where you will need to continue to rest.
Recovering from Cataract Surgery
The hardest part of cataract surgery is the recovery from it. Full recovery can take months to achieve, but you won’t be bedridden for that entire time.
You will need to be the most careful during the first few days after your surgery. Eventually, you can begin to incorporate your normal routine back into your life.
Within a few weeks, you will be back to enjoying most aspects of your life without having to think about your surgery. The best part, you’ll finally have clear vision again!
Wondering if you might need cataract surgery? Schedule a cataract screening at Associates in Ophthalmology in Livingston, NJ to find out!