Traditional & Laser-Assisted Cataract Surgery
What is a cataract?
Your eyes have a natural lens that refracts light to help you see. Normally, the lens is clear, but if you have a cataract the lens gradually becomes cloudy. As a cataract progresses, you may notice a decrease in your clarity of vision that glasses cannot fully correct.
Cataract surgery–what to expect
Traditional cataract surgery is a safe and effective way to restore vision. It’s usually done on an outpatient basis and only requires a short recovery period. The procedure is generally completed in 10 to 15 minutes and only involves a few steps:
You will be given a mild sedative and your eye will be cleansed. Drops will be added to dilate your pupil, and an anesthetic will be applied to the eye to ensure your comfort.
Removing the old lens
Your surgeon will make a small incision on the side of your cornea, the clear, dome-shaped surface that covers the front of your eye. Then, the doctor will insert a tiny instrument that will soften and break up the lens so it can be removed by suction.
Inserting the new lens
After the cataract is removed, an artificial lens called an IOL will be inserted through the same tiny incision. Your surgeon will secure the new lens and make sure that it is properly aligned.
The incision is so small that it seals itself, so stitches usually aren’t necessary. You can resume normal activities the day after your surgery.
During cataract surgery, the eye’s natural, cloudy lens is removed and replaced with a clear, plastic implant called an intraocular lens (IOL). IOLs become a permanent part of the eye and do not require any care. Several different types of IOL are available, each with their own advantages and disadvantages.
Traditional monofocal implants
Traditional IOLs are monofocal, meaning they offer vision at one distance only (far, intermediate or near). Your doctor will help decide whether it’s most important for you to see up close or at a distance without glasses. If you choose the distance option, glasses will likely still be required for reading and computer work.
Traditional IOLs are the most common type of lens, and Medicare or insurance usually covers the cost.
If you have astigmatism and choose a monofocal lens, you may still need to wear glasses all the time.
Lifestyle lens implants
AcrySof® ReSTOR® Multifocal Lenses are designed to help patients see near, far and in between without glasses or contact lenses.
Multifocal IOLs offer the best chance to see both near and far without wearing glasses or contact lenses.
These are the most expensive lens choice. Most insurance does not cover the additional expense of these lenses.
Toric monofocal lenses
AcrySof® ReSTOR® Toric IOLs correct distance vision in patients with astigmatism.
Toric lenses generally provide clear distance vision. For some people, toric lenses give them the crispest vision of their life.
You will likely need glasses or contact lenses to read. Most insurance does not cover the cost of toric lenses.
Laser-assisted cataract surgery
In addition to traditional cataract surgery, we also offer a premium upgrade—femto laser technology approved by the FDA for the treatment of cataracts.
Laser cataract surgery is a fully customizable, precision care solution for restoring your clearest possible vision. This pre-planned outpatient procedure uses detailed computerized mapping of your eyes to achieve the highly accurate results.
Is laser-assisted cataract surgery right for me?
While insurance covers cataract surgery, it does not cover the additional cost of the laser portion. If you are interested in laser surgery, or any other cataract procedure, please contact our office. Our doctors will be happy to explain all your options so that you can make an informed decision.