If you or a loved one are currently scheduled to have cataract surgery, you may have some questions about what to expect after the procedure. That’s a normal reaction before you have any surgical procedure, and it’s a good way to prepare.
Not sure where to start? Keep reading for an idea of what you can expect after having cataract surgery!
Right after cataract surgery
After having cataract surgery, you’ll need to stick around for a few minutes while any anesthesia works its way out of your system. After your doctor clears you, you can go home.
It’s important to know that you cannot drive yourself home after cataract surgery so make sure you have a friend or family member that can drive you home. You may be a little tired, groggy, or disoriented when you get home.
You’re going to want to take a nap but before you can do that, make sure you put on the eye shield that your surgeon gave you. The eye shield isn’t exactly pretty but it will protect your eye while you’re sleeping.
After you wake up, you may be able to look at your phone or watch TV for a short amount of time, but don’t overdo it. If your eyes feel like they are getting tired, you may want to rest instead.
Don’t forget to take the eye drops prescribed to you throughout the day. You may need to use them every hour or every other hour to control inflammation and to prevent infection.
The day after cataract surgery
On the day after you have cataract surgery, your vision may be blurry or uneven. This is normal as your vision needs time to adjust and heal.
Most cataract surgeons will ask you to come in for your first follow-up appointment the day after cataract surgery. It’s extremely important that you attend this appointment.
This allows your surgeon to check how your eye is starting to heal and if there are any complications or signs of infection. If there are any problems, it’s always better to catch them and treat them early on.
A few days after cataract surgery
By this point, your eyes should start feeling better. They may feel less irritated, itchy, and your vision may start to stabilize. Continue being careful with your eyes, especially around any bodies of water.
You should not take part in any strenuous activities, or do anything that requires bending at the waist as well. Don’t let the fact that you’re starting to feel more like your normal self hurt your recovery process.
It’s important to continue taking things easy and follow any instructions that your surgeon gave you as you continue recovering.
One week after cataract surgery
At the one week mark, you can ask your surgeon about no longer needing to wear your eye shield while sleeping. Make sure to confirm this with them before doing anything.
You can comfortably perform tasks like working on the computer, reading a book, or watching television at the one week mark after cataract surgery as well. At this point, you will need another follow-up appointment with your surgeon so they examine your eye and see how it’s continued to heal.
By now, any swelling will have started going down, making it easier to see how your eye has healed. Your vision may still be slightly blurry but it will be much clearer than it was right after you had cataract surgery and will only continue improving!
One month after cataract surgery
A month after cataract surgery, your vision should be much clearer than it was before, both with cataracts and after you had cataract surgery! Colors may look brighter, and the world may look sharper.
Cataract surgery, on average, can take about two months to fully recover from. At the two month mark, your vision will be at its best after cataract surgery.
Until reaching the two-month mark, your vision will continue improving. Unfortunately, you should avoid activities like swimming for four to eight weeks after cataract surgery, so plan accordingly.
What to do if you have cataracts in both eyes
For some patients, they find that they have cataracts in both eyes that need removal. For the best results, cataract surgeons will not usually remove both cataracts at the same time.
Instead, one cataract is removed, and then the second one is then removed about a month after. Removing cataracts in this way makes the most sense because it gives you time to adjust to your new vision.
If there is a problem with the first eye that has surgery, it’s much easier to treat it, rather than having to treat both eyes at the same time. It’s also much safer to operate on the eyes separately, since cataract removal can impact vision, at least temporarily.
During the recovery process after cataract surgery, it’s important to be very careful to not bump into anything or hit your head. This can impact how your eye recovers and how you see.
Life after cataract surgery recovery
Life with cataracts wasn’t much fun, but life after cataract surgery and recovery is much better! Thanks to the artificial lens (IOL) that replaces the natural lens during cataract surgery, patients can see clearly again.
Many patients with cataracts find that they are no longer able to take part in their favorite activities anymore, but cataract surgery provides visual freedom. It’s the freedom to go for a walk around the neighborhood with a friend or drive down to the store to run errands.
It gives you the independence that you may have lost due to cataracts and their slow takeover of your life. But after cataract surgery, you get your life back! What could be better than that?
Cataracts are most known for affecting older people. Especially in patients over 40, cataracts are part of the natural aging process.
But cataracts can come from different causes. Keep reading to learn more about other ways you can develop cataracts!
Traditional cataracts occur because of aging. When the proteins inside of your lens begin to break down, they clump together.
As these clumps of protein begin to grow, they become big enough to block light or distort it.
There are several different symptoms that come along with cataracts. These can include:
blurry or hazy vision
a yellowish tint to your eyesight
Sometimes exposure to radiation can cause cataracts to develop. This includes gamma radiation, but more often refers to ultraviolet radiation.
The sun is a major source of UV radiation. Want to avoid developing radiation cataracts? Wear sunglasses with UV radiation protection and a wide-brimmed hat when you’re outside. These are two easy ways to stay protected from the sun’s radiation.
Cataracts can form as a response to severe eye injuries, especially that form on the lens of the eye. Blunt or penetrating objects that pierce or harm the lens can disrupt the fibers inside of the lens.
Sometimes eye surgery can cause cataracts. This even includes cataract surgery, strange as it may sound.
This does not mean cataracts “grow back”. During cataract surgery, the lens is removed and replaced with an artificial lens.
A secondary cataract forms in the membrane that holds the lens. If you have a secondary cataract, you need a procedure called a YAG laser capsulotomy.
This procedure is very simple and just as safe as cataract surgery. During the procedure, your surgeon pokes a small hole through the membrane.
This way, it can still hold the lens in place while allowing light to pass through it.
Even infants are not safe from cataracts. Congenital cataracts are often a hereditary trait. They can be part of a larger underlying issue such as congenital rubella syndrome. Sometimes they stem from an unknown source.
Congenital cataracts are often small enough to not impede vision. They can be large enough that not removing them can lead to further vision problems for the child.
Congenital cataracts are usually removed while the baby is only a few weeks old.
Schedule a cataract screening if you think you have a cataract
Cataracts, no matter the kind, need a proper diagnosis from a trained eye doctor. If you think you have a cataract, it’s important to schedule a cataract screening.
During this screening, you’ll undergo a series of tests. These tests help determine if you have cataracts. Even if you have a cataract, it doesn’t always mean it needs immediate removal.
Your eye doctor will go over their recommendations for removal during your screening. This is a good time to ask any questions you may have about the procedure and what to expect.
Do you think you may have cataracts? Schedule your cataract screening at Takle Eye Group in Griffin, GA today! Don’t let your distorted vision stand in your way of clearer vision any longer!
Intraocular lenses are part of a refractive surgery known as refractive lens exchange. Refractive lens exchange is also known as RLE. RLE treats people with presbyopia, cataracts, or as an alternative to LASIK.
During RLE, the cornea is opened up, leaving the tissue still attached. This is to allow for quick healing after the procedure.
The lens is then broken apart. This uses either lasers or a process called phacoemulsification.
Phacoemulsufication uses sonic disruption. After the lens breakdown, the pieces of the lens are then removed with suction.
The IOL is implanted and the cornea is then closed. This is all done under the effects of a numbing agent, so there is no pain during a refractive lens exchange.
While the surgery is straightforward, selecting an IOL is an important decision. If you have questions, discuss your IOL options with your eye doctor.
They will be able to explain to you the differences and their recommendation for you. Want to know a little about IOLs before your cataract screening at Takle Eye? Keep reading to learn more!
Monofocal IOLs are the “standard” option for IOLs. They provide excellent vision, but only for either far vision or close up vision. This means that you will still need to wear glasses after RLE if you get monofocal IOLs.
If you want a multifocal experience using monofocal IOLs, there’s a way. You can try a technique called monovision. With monovision, the surgeon puts a close up IOL in one eye and a far away IOL in the other.
Most patients find that after a short time, they are able to switch eyes depending on the distance away. Not everyone’s brain can handle this switch.
If you find that monovision isn’t working for you, you can always go back and switch to a different IOL. Changing IOLs isn’t something that’s encouraged, but it is possible and safe.
The first of the “premium” IOLs, multifocal IOLs allow vision at both near and far distances. They resemble bifocal lenses and operate in a similar fashion.
Certain parts of the IOL focus at different distances. Multifocal IOLs are quite popular, but are not the only premium option available.
Accommodating IOLs also allow you to see both near and far. With accommodating IOLs, they move around the eyes in a smooth and natural way.
They are specifically designed to be as close to the natural lens as possible. This allows your eye to focus seamlessly, at all distances, without feeling unnatural.
There are even more IOL options out there for you to experience. Want to choose the best IOL for you? Schedule an appointment at Takle Eye Group in Griffin, Georgia today!
When your vision is less than perfect, it’s easy to jump at a popular treatment, expecting it to be the one for you. Lasik, for example, is the most commonly performed vision correction surgery. It is a highly effective procedure, but for people over age 50 with vision issues it might be worth talking to your doctor about cataract surgery before you go in for Lasik. Once you understand how both cataract surgery and Lasik work, it’s easy to see how important it is to choose the right procedure for your condition.
Cataracts are a clouding of the lens of the eye. They can distort or obscure normal vision. Often, patients will complain of a “film” over the eye, or halos forming around light sources. The only effective treatment of a cataract is surgical removal of the lens.
Cataract surgery is one of the most common and successful surgeries performed in America, with nearly 99 percent of outcomes resulting in improved vision. During cataract surgery, the eye’s natural lens is removed and is replaced with an artificial lens.
Lasik, while it can be helpful in conjunction with cataract surgery, can’t be used alone to treat cataracts. During Lasik, the surgeon uses a laser to reshape the clear refractive bump on the front of the eye, called the cornea, so that light coming into the eye is focused correctly.
Cataracts can’t be improved with laser treatment, but Lasik can be used to address poor vision post-surgery. This generally isn’t necessary, however, as the technology for artificial lenses greatly reduces the likelihood of a patient’s vision needing further adjustment.
So which treatment is right for you? Speak to your eye doctor about any vision issues you may be having, and together you can determine the correct treatment for your needs. Takle Eye Group offers patients a state-of-the-art eye surgery facility and the latest no-stitch small-incision surgical techniques. Schedule your appointment online or by calling 770-228-3836 and find out what we can do to improve your vision.
The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.
Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider.