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Cataract SurgeryWhat Is a Cataract?
A cataract is the progressive thickening and clouding of the eye’s lens, obstructing light passing through the eye to the retina. Anyone can develop cataracts, but they are more common in people over age 60 and is a leading cause of vision loss.
What Are the Symptoms of a Cataract?
- Vision that’s cloudy, blurry, dim, foggy, yellowish or filmy
- Trouble with vision even with new glasses or contact lenses
- Changes in the way you see color
- Problems driving at night (glare from oncoming headlights, for example)
- Problems with glare during the day
- Double vision in the affected eye
- Poor depth perception
- Vision worse in the sunlight
What Causes Cataracts?
- Eye trauma
- Some medications (such as steroids)
- UV light
- Underlying metabolic conditions
How Are Cataracts Treated?
Currently, there is no medical treatment to reverse or completely prevent the development of cataracts. Once they form, the only way to achieve clear vision again is through cataract surgery.
There was a time when cataract surgery was risky and required a lengthy hospital stay. Today, cataract surgery is performed in an outpatient setting and takes only a few minutes. It is now one of the most common and successful medical procedures performed.
The cataract is broken up using ultrasound energy and then removed at the time of surgery. It is then replaced with a clear intraocular lens (IOL) implant to improve your vision.
There are multiple options for the IOL:
These are single focus lenses that allow for clear vision at distance or near. Glasses are generally needed after surgery (for example, if an IOL is placed to correct your vision for distance, you will need reading glasses to see up close).
These IOLs are monofocal lenses that additionally correct for astigmatism. Toric IOLs provide better vision than standard monofocal lenses in those who have significant astigmatism affecting their vision.
These IOLs give a wider range of vision without glasses. In most cases, glasses will not be needed either for driving or TV and also close up vision, such as computers or reading. These lenses function somewhat like built-in bifocals, splitting the focused light between distance and near.
Toric Multifocal IOL
These IOLs are multifocal lenses that additionally correct for astigmatism. Toric multifocal IOLs provide better vision than the multifocal lenses in those who have significant astigmatism affecting their vision.
Extended Depth of Focus IOL
These IOLs are designed to allow for an extended range of sharp vision and low incidence of halo and glare. They differ from multifocal lenses by allowing for a more continuous range of near vision instead of multiple points of focus.
Toric Extended Depth of Focus IOL
These IOLs are designed to allow for an extended range of sharp vision and low incidence of halo and glare. They differ from multifocal lenses by allowing for a more continuous range of near vision instead of multiple points of focus. Toric extended depth of focus IOLs provide better vision than the extended depth of focus lenses in those who have significant astigmatism affecting their vision.
Which Is the Right IOL for Me?
In the past, the monofocal IOL was the only lens available for implantation. Over the last 10 years, the FDA has approved several lifestyle intraocular lens implants for use. These lenses can increase your chances for a life free of dependence on glasses or contacts after cataract surgery for near, far and intermediate vision. That being said, one approach or IOL is not better than another–they’re merely different. Our goal is to provide the safest and most effective cataract surgery for each patient. Dr. Gelman will do everything in her power to personalize the cataract surgery approach and IOL choice for you so you will be able to enjoy your clearer vision for years to come!