What is a Cataract?
A cataract is a clouding of the normally clear lens of the eye. It can be compared to a window that is frosted or yellowed. There are many misconceptions about cataracts.
A Cataract is not:
- a film over the eye
- caused by overusing the eyes
- spread from one eye to the other
- a cause of irreversible blindness
- can be removed with a laser
Common symptoms of Cataracts include:
- a painless blurring of vision
- glare or light sensitivity
- poor night vision
- double vision in one eye
- needing brighter light to read
- fading or yellowing of colors
The amount and pattern of cloudiness within the lens can vary. If the cloudiness is not near the center of the lens, you may not be aware that a cataract is present.
How Are Cataracts Treated?
Surgery is the only way a cataract can be removed; however, if symptoms of cataract are not extremely bothersome, surgery may not be needed. Sometimes a simple change in your eyeglass prescription may be helpful. There are no medications, dietary supplements or exercises that have been shown to prevent or cure cataracts. Using sunglasses that block U.V. light may help delay the onset of some types of cataracts.
When should surgery be done?
Surgery should be considered when cataracts cause enough loss of vision to interfere with your daily activities.
It is not true that cataracts need to be "ripe" before they can be removed, or that they need to be removed just because they are present. Cataract surgery can be performed when your visual needs require it. You must decide if you can see to do your job and drive safely or, if you can read and watch TV in comfort. Can you see well enough to perform daily tasks, such as cooking, shopping, yard work or seeing medications instructions?
Based on your symptoms, you and I will decide together when surgery is appropriate.
Will the Cataract come back?
Sometimes people who have extracapsular surgery develop capsular fibrosis. When this happens, the back part of the lens capsule becomes cloudy and keeps light from reaching the retina. Unlike a cataract, capsular fibrosis is treated with a laser. In a technique called YAG Laser capsulotomy, a surgeon uses a laser beam to make a tiny hole in the capsule to let light pass through. This is a painless outpatient procedure.
Follow-up and Co-Management
We have been successfully co-managing cataract surgery patients since 1984. Co-management allows our practice to perform your follow-up visits after your cataract surgery, which minimizes the amount of travel required for follow-up care. We take pride in maintaining superior standards of care. Providing follow-up care allows the office to provide you with your post-operative prescription sooner. No longer do you have to wait sixty to ninety days to be able to read again. An appointment will be scheduled for your first post-operative visit one week after surgery. Medicare allows all patients to choose this option to provide timely quality of care.