Frequently Asked Questions
Most frequent questions and answers
Can cataracts come back?
Because the natural lens has been removed, cataracts cannot come back. Occasionally a film can form on the lens which can be treated with an outpatient laser procedure, this is called a secondary cataract but is different from a true cataract.
Will I be awake for surgery?
Yes, patients are given a conscious sedation meaning you will be relaxed but awake.
Can both eyes be done at the same time?
This is not recommended as vision can take several weeks to stabilize during healing and vision can be slightly compromised. Also, one eye at a time can help reduce the occurrence of post operative complications.
Will I have stitches or sutures?
Stitches or sutures are generally not used, a small incision is placed and the eye will self-seal the wound.
Are there any eye drops or supplements I can take to prevent or dissolve cataracts?
Most cataracts are a result of the aging process of the natural lens in your eye, there is no evidence to support that supplements or eye drops help to reduce the occurrence of cataracts or dissolve them.
Is surgery the only way to get rid of cataracts?
Yes, the dense and cloudy natural lens must be removed and replaced by an implant to recover/improve vision.
If I have cataracts do I need surgery now?
Surgery is only recommended when the cataracts begin to impair your lifestyle and when the risks of surgery are outweighed by the benefits as deemed in consult with your Doctor.
Does cataract surgery get rid of floaters?
No, however, it will improve glare, haloes, and cloudy vision.
Does the natural lens (cataract) need to be replaced?
Yes, without a replacement lens, the eye will not be able to focus light to allow for clear vision.
What are the lenses made of?
Can you feel the lens inside of the eye?
No, but the vision will be different that you are used to and it will likely take a little time to get used to, this varies for every patient.
What if I blink during surgery?
There will be a device used to hold the eye open so you are unable to blink, the eye will be numbed and moisturized frequently for comfort.
Can I drive myself to surgery?
No, you will need a driver the day of surgery due to anesthesia. You are able to use a rideshare service/taxi, however, someone you know must accompany you home.
What if I cough during surgery?
Usually not an issue, we try to minimize this, if this is a concern, discuss with your doctor.
Do I need to stop medications and supplements before surgery?
Depending on what you are taking, a nurse from the surgery center will review your medications and contact you one week prior to surgery to stop any medications that need to be stopped, all others can be continued.
Do I take my usual medications before surgery?
Yes, unless the nurse from the surgery center instructs you otherwise.
Can I go to work after cataract surgery?
Depending on what you do for work you may return after your 1 day post op appointment. Restrictions will be placed on heavy lifting and strenuous activity.
Can I fly after surgery?
Flying is not a concern; however, we request you do not travel out of town within one week of surgery in case additional follow up is needed.
Can I go to the mountains after surgery?
When can I use a swimming pool, hot tub, or sauna?
Do not participate in these activities for 3 weeks after surgery.
Will I need medication/drops after surgery?
No, we use a drop-less method and will place the necessary medications in the eye during surgery. No drops or medications specific to the surgery will be required before or after surgery.
Can I have dental work done near the same time as cataract surgery?
Dental work is recommended prior to cataract surgery, if it needs to be done after, please wait at least 1 week from surgery to schedule.
Can previous eye surgery impact the outcome of my cataract surgery?
Yes. Previous eye surgery, especially refractive surgery such as RK, LASIK, and PRK can affect the outcome of surgery, so can pre-existing eye disease. We take great care in your preoperative measurements and exam to avoid this wherever possible and provide the best possible outcome.
How long does cataract surgery take?
The surgery itself only takes a few minutes, however, you will be at the surgery center for 2-2.5 hours from check-in to check-out (pre and post op).
What are the symptoms of cataracts?
Symptoms associated with cataracts are blurry/cloudy vision. Colors can look dull, dim, or faded, trouble seeing at night, trouble with bright lights, glare, halos, difficulty reading up close, decreased contrast sensitivity, and in some cases, depth perception.
Will my night vision improve after cataract surgery?
Yes, cataract surgery will improve night vision, enabling you to drive at night and walk in low light.
Will I need glasses after cataract surgery?
Depending on which lens options are appropriate for your eye, you may or may not need corrective lenses after cataract surgery. Your surgeon will let you know which option(s) are best for you and help you with this decision, based on this decision we will be able to determine how likely you are to need corrective lenses after surgery.
What are the risks of cataract surgery?
These may include infection, swelling, redness, secondary cataract, the need for additional surgery, in addition to other potential risks that will be reviewed prior to consenting to surgery.
What restrictions will I have after surgery?
No heavy lifting or strenuous/inverted activity- 1 week
Avoid hot tubs, saunas, and pools- 3 weeks
Discuss prescription eye drops with surgeon to determine when you can safely resume them.
Other restrictions may apply on a case by case basis and depending on occupation/hobbies.