Do you Need Laser Cataract Surgery?
Cataracts are an easily treatable eye condition commonly seen in older adults. In rare cases, younger people, children, and babies can also develop cataracts. A cataract is the result of a build-up of protein on the natural lens of the eye. Cataracts can cause blurred vision, changes in the way you see color, and significant glare from bright lights.
They can also affect your ability to see at night. If you find you are experiencing these symptoms, it is possible you have a cataract. Laser cataract surgery is a safe, effective treatment that removes the cataract from your eye and can restore your vision.
Laser Cataract Surgery
More than 1.5 million cataract surgeries are performed in the U.S. every year. It’s safe and effective, and it typically takes less than an hour to complete. After the surgeon administers a local anesthetic, a laser is used to make a small incision between the cornea, the clear front surface of the eye, and the sclera, the white part.
Through this incision, the surgeon breaks up and removes the eye’s natural lens, which has become cloudy from the protein build-up. After removing the natural lens, the surgeon inserts an intraocular lens in its place.
This intraocular lens can also be used to correct common vision problems like far-sightedness and near-sightedness, and even astigmatism or presbyopia. This means you may not have to wear glasses as much after the surgery, if at all.
Once the intraocular lens is in place, the incision normally heals on its own. In rare cases, small sutures may be used to close the incision.
What Are the Advantages of Laser Cataract Surgery?
Advantages of laser cataract surgery include an increase in accuracy and precision. Using a laser ensures the consistent size, depth, and position of the incision.
Laser cataract surgery also requires less movement, reducing irritation and inflammation for a quicker recovery. Studies have shown that laser cataract surgery causes less cell damage than manual methods.
One of the most delicate parts of cataract surgery is the removal of the cataract itself. In traditional cataract surgery, the surgeon uses an ultrasonic device to break up the cataract. The surgeon inserts this device into the incision, and the ultrasonic energy can lead to heat build-up, burning the incision and negatively affecting the patient’s visual outcome.
One of the other advantages of laser cataract surgery is that it eliminates this potential problem. In laser cataract surgery, the laser softens the cataract as it’s broken up, making it much easier to extract without causing further damage to the patient’s vision.
Laser cataract surgery is an effective and safe method of treating cataracts. If you think you may have a cataract, visit your eye doctor as soon as possible. They will discuss your options with you and tell you if you’re a candidate for laser cataract surgery.