In this post, Dr Matthew Russell discusses how standard cataract surgery works and how you will see the world clearer than you ever have before.
The only way to treat a cataract is to surgically remove it and implant an artificial lens in its place. Cataract surgery is the most performed surgery in Australia. The procedure takes less than an hour and does not need an overnight stay. We perform cataract surgery in a day, using local anaesthetic eye drops and light sedation.
We make a tiny incision in the cornea (the clear membrane on the surface of the eye) and then insert a fine ultrasound instrument. We use ultrasound energy to emulsify the lens gently. We then carefully remove it under microscopic guidance. Once I’ve removed it completely, I implant the artificial lens (intraocular lens, or IOL) using a special lens injector. In most cases, the IOL will sit within the natural ‘bag’ that holds the original crystalline lens. You won’t usually need sutures.
The surgery takes less than an hour. Generally, the total time at the hospital is approximately three hours. Once the operation is complete, I will place a clear shield over your eye for four hours post-surgery. After this, you will need to start taking postoperative eye drops.
I treat each eye separately on different days. With standard cataract surgery, we implant monofocal lenses which have a single point of focus. This means the lens will be fixed for either near or distance vision, but not both. You will need to resume wearing your normal prescription glasses after the surgery.
You can usually update your prescription glasses 4 to 6 weeks after surgery once I give you clearance to do so.
The lens implants are permanent. We don’t need to replace them. They’re so stable that they’ll outlast you.
If you’d like to know more about the services we offer to cataract patients in Brisbane, give us a call. If you’d like to see if we can help you, book a consultation.