Cataracts - Surgery
Surgery for cataracts involves removing the clouded lens of the eye
(the cataract). The lens can be replaced with an artificial lens called an
intraocular lens implant (IOL). Or, if an IOL cannot be used for any reason, it
will be left out and contact lenses or, in rare cases, eyeglasses can compensate for
its absence. Most people will get an IOL during surgery.
surgery, ask your doctor about what types of IOLs can go in your
eye. Or, if you will not be getting an IOL, ask
about the pros and cons of contact lenses or eyeglasses.
Options to help you see better after surgery
Intraocular lens (IOL)Intraocular lens (IOL). A variety of IOL
types are available. Work with your doctor to choose the best
one for you.
Contact lensContact lens. You will need to
insert, remove, and clean the lenses on a regular basis. A contact
lens may not be a good choice for young children or older adults who have a
hard time properly placing the lens on the eye.
Cataract glasses. Cataract glasses were used for
decades when there were no other options for lens replacement. Because they are
thick and heavy, they are rarely used now.
For most adults, surgery is only needed when vision
loss caused by a cataract affects your quality of life. The goals of surgery in
adults who have cataracts include:
- Improving vision.
- Helping you
return to work, leisure, and other daily activities.
- Cataracts: Should I Have Surgery?
The choices for
treating cataracts in children depend on how likely
the cataracts are to interfere with the development of normal vision. Surgery for
cataracts in children may be needed.
For adults who have cataracts in
both eyes, surgery is not normally done on both eyes at the same time. The
first eye needs to heal. Then your doctor will determine how much eyesight has
improved before surgery is done on the second eye.
If you have both
glaucoma and cataracts, you may have
surgery for both conditions at the same time.
Depending on which condition caused the vision loss, vision may improve after