Corneal Associates of New Jersey is always up-to-date with the latest advancements in cataract surgery technology and techniques. We perform no-shot, no-stitch, no-patch cataract surgery using phacoemulsification, microincisions, and only local anesthesia. Our patients spend about 2 to 3 hours at our practice on their surgery date, and only about 10-15 minutes of that is actual surgery time.
Cataract surgery the most frequently performed insured surgery in the United States, in part because developing cataracts is related to ultraviolet light exposure (which affects everyone).
What Are Cataracts?
The crystalline lens of the eye focuses light towards the back of the eye (the retina). As we age, this lens gradually becomes hard and cloudy, making vision hazy and blurry. This is what a cataract refers to – the clouding of the eye’s natural lens. Cataract removal is the only way to restore normal vision when this occurs.
Are there other types of cataract?
Yes. Although most cataracts are related to aging, there are other types of cataract:
- Secondary cataract. Cataracts can form after surgery for other eye problems, such as glaucoma. Cataracts also can develop in people who have other health problems, such as diabetes. Cataracts are sometimes linked to steroid use.
- Traumatic cataract. In some cases, cataracts develop after an eye injury, sometimes years later.
- Congenital cataract. Some babies are born with cataracts or develop them in childhood, often in both eyes. These cataracts may be so small that they do not affect vision. If they do, the lenses may need to be removed.
- Radiation cataract. Cataracts can develop after exposure to some types of radiation.
Cataract surgery may be part of your near or distant future. Therefore, it is important to be familiar with your options, as well as the technological breakthroughs available to you. We encourage you to learn about your options.
Symptoms of cataracts include visual difficulties while driving at night, a loss of color, or loss of detail or sharpness of objects. Although most cataract patients are over the age of 50, some people can get cataracts from diabetes, or physical trauma.
About Cataract Surgery
Modern day cataract surgery is routinely performed with small incision micro-surgery through a process known as “phacoemulsification”.
The cataract is removed through the smallest possible incision, and the lens is removed by an ultrasonic probe.
The hardened cataract is removed and a state-of-the-art intraocular lens is used as a replacement.
Steps Of Cataract Surgery
After the eye has been sterilized and the pupil is dilated, the surgeon makes a tiny incision using a highly specialized microscope. The micro-incision is created at the junction of the cornea and the white part of the eye, known as the sclera. The lens capsule is opened, and the ultrasonic probe is inserted. The ultrasonic probe then pulverizes the cataract and suctions out the cataract material. After the cataract is removed, the surgeon implants an artificial intraocular lens. The lens is a foldable lens that slides through a tube and unfolds in the same open space the cataract once occupied. Once the lens is centered, the surgery is complete. In most cases, no stitches are required to seal the incision. This is a crucial point of understanding for patients. Patients can either have a monofocal Medicare-approved lens, which will only correct vision for one distance, or they can opt to upgrade to a premium multifocal or accommodative lens implant that will reduce or eliminate their need for glasses after cataract surgery.
Recovering From Cataract Surgery
Recovery from cataract surgery is generally quick. The average patient achieves drastically better vision within the first 24 hours of the procedure. The eye doctor will prescribe medicated eye drops, which need to be taken several times per day. The patient must abstain from rigorous activities or sports for the first few weeks after surgery. Eye shields are given after surgery to prevent rubbing or bumping of the eyes.
Premium Lens Implants For Cataract Surgery
For those wishing to reduce or eliminate the need for glasses, modern day lens implants for cataract surgery have significantly improved over the last few years. Prior to the advent of premium lens implants, or multifocal IOLs, cataract surgery patients only had the option of a monofocal lens implant, which could only correct vision at one distance and also required the continued use of glasses. Now, cataract surgery patients can choose multifocal and accommodating lens implants that can correct near, intermediate and distance vision. Our surgeons are able to advise patients on the type of lens that best suits their unique visual situation and lifestyle. It is important for cataract surgery patients to realize that while cataract surgery frequently results in a reduced dependency on eyeglasses, such results cannot be guaranteed. Our surgeons are happy to discuss the latest technological advances in cataract surgery and the potential lifestyle benefits.