What is a Cataract?
Cataracts are an opacity or clouding of the normally clear lens inside of the eye and occur as part of the normal aging process. The cloudy lens tends to progress with time and may interfere with the ability to drive, read, or watch TV. Cataracts may also be caused by injury, certain drugs or may be inherited. With cataracts a change of glasses can sometimes help, but eventually surgery is required to restore vision. Corrective cataract surgery can be undertaken when a patient is unhappy with their ability to see and the surgeon has decided cataract removal will be beneficial.
In cataract surgery the cloudy lens is removed and lost focusing power is restored with an artificial lens implant. A single focus implant is covered by all insurance contracts and usually requires some form of glasses to correct vision completely There are special types of lens implants that can reduce astigmatism and also give both distance and near vision. These lenses will greatly reduce one’s dependence on glasses. These lens implants, however, are NOT covered by any insurance and require an additional out of pocket payment. Your surgeon will discuss these options and advise you as to your best options.
Cataract surgery is a remarkably safe and easy procedure with very few serious complications. It is the most commonly performed surgery in the United States with over 98% of patients reporting improved vision after surgery. It is generally performed in an outpatient setting with minimal discomfort and a return to most activities the day after surgery.