There is no procedure safer and more successful in medicine today than cataract removal and lens implant surgery. Success rates are upwards of 98%. Providing you don’t have any pre-existing damage to the eye, most patients recover quickly and enjoy excellent vision.
As with any surgical procedure, there are risks involved. These risks may include infection, retinal detachment, an increase in eye pressure, reactions to medicines and vision changes. Dr. Burks or Dr. Gailitis will discuss all risks and benefits with you before your surgery. There is a small chance that your vision could be made worse by the operation, especially, if bleeding or infection occur. These risks are rare and should be weighed against the potential benefits of restoring your vision. Please read the informed consent that will be provided to you for additional information.
Common side effects include temporary redness, scratchiness to the eye, and light sensitivity. These are normal following any eye surgery and usually resolve very quickly. With the multifocal lens implants, you may have some glare, and rings around lights at night. These temporary side effects may make it more difficult to see while driving at night or working in low light for a period of time after your procedure. These side effects generally resolve over time.
You will get the full benefit of the multifocal IOL when it is implanted in both eyes. Please discuss with Dr. Burks or Dr. Gailitis your work and hobby considerations so that he can recommend the optimal procedure and implant for you.
Once you and your surgeon have decided that you will have your cataract removed, a complete eye health exam will be performed, and your eye will be measured to determine the proper power of the intraocular lens that will be placed in your eye. Your lens replacement procedure will be performed in an outpatient surgery center. You will be in the center for approximately two hours on surgery day. You will be given medications to relax you and numb your eyes. A local anesthetic will make the operation virtually painless. The skin around your eye will be thoroughly cleansed, and sterile coverings will be placed around your head. Under an operating microscope, a small incision is made into the eye and your natural lens will be gently removed using an ultrasound instrument. The new lens will be placed in your eye through this same tiny incision. A stitch is occasionally needed to close this small incision.
When the operation is over, we will usually place a shield over your eye. After a short stay in the outpatient recovery area, you will be ready to go home. Plan to have someone drive you home. You will return to our office for a postoperative visit the next day. You should notice an improvement in your vision each day. Everyone heals at different rates. Your vision will continue to sharpen over the next 30 days.
Laser Cataract Surgery offers the advantage of precision and accuracy that cannot be reproduced by hand. Additional advantages include the correction of mild to moderate astigmatism and the softening of dense cataracts. For these reasons, Dr. Burks and Gailitis now perform the majority of their cataract surgery using a laser.