What you should know about cataract surgery

Posted on Dec 18 2011 by Lawrence Zweibel

There are many considerations you should be aware of before having cataract surgery.  The very first decision should be whether you're really ready for this procedure.  Of course you must have a cataract, but how do you know if this is the right time to have it removed.  There are two major considerations, the first being are you having trouble with your vision and is your lack of good vision preventing you from doing the things you want or need to do.  This may entail driving to and from work which can be further aggravated by poor lighting conditions such as the need to drive at night or poor lighting conditions where glare is often a major problem.  Poor vision may make it more difficult to read requiring greater magnification or perhaps interfere with your favorite sport such as golf.

Once you have decided you are ready for surgery a complete eye exam will be necessary.  It is important to know if there are any other ocular problems that can affect your surgical outcome.  Since up to half the people undergoing cataract surgery have some element of dry eyes and because proper tear secretion is essential to good vision this is a very important consideration.  Treatment of this condition prior to surgery is therefore advantageous.  Other examples of problems that should be dealt with prior to surgery include awareness of diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, lid droops (ptosis), etc.

Now that you know you're ready for surgery and all other ocular problems have been dealt with the next step is to know what your lens implant options are.  Since the cataract is an important lens within your eye it will have to be replaced with an artificial lens of which there are many types to pick from.  For those people desiring excellent vision with little or no glare there are excellent single vision aspheric lenses to choose.  Since there is only one focus on these lenses reading glasses will often be required for small print.  Those patients with significant astigmatism will still require glasses to help them with distance viewing as well.  To eliminate the need for such glasses they can choose to have implanted an excellent aspheric toric lens that can cancel out most or all of their astigmatism.  Still others may wish to further reduce their need for glasses by having a lens implanted that can give good vision for both near and far.  While there are several such lenses available to pick from one should keep in mind that glasses may still be required at times.  To keep the need for glasses to a minimum however, the surgeons at North Shore Eye Care, who have had extensive experience with these lenses since they have been made available, have many tools at their disposal.  The first is the IOL Master, a diagnostic laser device that accurately measures your eye so that we can give you the exact power lens that you will require.  Unfortunately no matter how accurate this machine is sometimes people may end up with a slight error that they may want corrected.  For those patients not wishing to wear glasses we are able to offer a lasik, an excellent procedure to fine tune small residual optical errors.

Finally, know your surgeons, the doctors at North Shore Eye Care have been recognized in Castle Connelly's Top Doctors in the New York Metro area for the past 10 years in a row.  We are one of the fastest growing practices on Long Island with specialist in many fields of Ophthalmology.  As team physicians for the New York Islanders and lasik specialist to the New York Mets you can be sure that you'll be in good hands.

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