The only way to effectively treat cataracts – when the lens of your eye becomes progressively cloudier over time – is with cataract surgery.
Cataract surgery is a safe and effective outpatient procedure. It also happens to be one of the most common eye procedures in older adults. The surgery involves removing the cloudy lens from your eye and replacing it with an artificial one. Cataract surgery can significantly improve your vision, which can greatly boost your quality of life.
Ask your ophthalmologist if you are a good candidate for cataract surgery. If so, you may also benefit from refractive cataract surgery, in which certain visual impairments – nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism – can be treated at the same time as the cataract procedure.
Laser-Assisted Cataract Surgery
At South Florida Vision Associates, we offer our ophthalmology patients laser-assisted cataract surgery.
Laser-assisted cataract surgery is the latest and most advanced method of performing cataract surgery. Instead of the traditional method in which a scalpel is used to make an incision in the cornea, your South Florida Vision Associates ophthalmologist utilizes state-of-the-art technology and the least invasive surgical techniques to make the smallest and most precise incision – with accuracy no human hand could match.
An imaging device maps the inside of your eye and translates this detailed data to a computer-assisted laser. During the procedure, your surgeon uses the laser to create an incision of the exact size and depth needed – and in the precise location based on the shape of your eye. A probe is used to break up the cloudy lens and extract it. Then, your surgeon inserts the artificial lens in its place. The incision is self-sealing – no stitches are required.
The benefits of the laser-assisted approach to cataract surgery include:
- Precise, customized incisions for improved surgical accuracy
- Less post-op discomfort or pain
- Faster visual recovery and healing
- More refined and predictable results
- Laser is used to soften the cataract – making it easier to break it up and extract it
- Reduced risk of post-op corneal swelling
There is no pain during cataract surgery. You will be given local and IV anesthesia, and a device will hold your eyelids open. The vast majority of patients do not recall any part of the procedure itself.
Refractive Cataract Surgery
Refractive cataract surgery simply means that steps are taken during your laser-assisted cataract surgery to correct any refractive errors in your vision.
Refractive errors are those caused by the shape of your eye. For example, your South Florida Vision Associates ophthalmologist may replace your cataract with specific types of an intraocular lens (IOL) that can correct for nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. In addition, the laser may also be used to make specific incisions in the cornea that change its shape to correct astigmatism.
There are many different types of IOLs, categorized as the following:
Monofocal IOLs offer a single point of focus and do not provide additional vision correction (if you wore glasses before your surgery, you will need to wear glasses after surgery).
Multifocal IOLs offer multiple points of focus to reduce your dependence on corrective eyewear after surgery.
Trifocal IOL is the newest available IOL, which can improve your near, intermediate, and distance vision, reducing your need for glasses or contacts following cataract surgery.
Toric IOLs are designed to correct significant astigmatism.
Most South Florida Vision Associates cataract procedures are performed in our state-of-the-art ambulatory surgery center. By operating our very own outpatient surgery center, we have the luxury of controlling the patient experience from the minute they enter the facility to when they leave. We strive to deliver a comfortable and positive experience for every patient.
Cataract surgery is one of the most common – and life-changing – outpatient procedures. You will be amazed at how restoring your vision can significantly improve your quality of life. Contact the South Florida Vision Associates ophthalmology location nearest you to find out if you are a good candidate for a laser-assisted refractive cataract surgery. You can also request an appointment to discuss your options with one of our cataract specialists.