Cataract & IOL Surgery
Microincision Sutureless Cataract Surgery – Modern day Microsurgery to Restore and Enhance Vision
Vision is our most precious sense enabling us to fully enjoy the beauty of the world in which we live. Blindness has been recognized as an important public health problem in India. A nationwide survey, undertaken in 1999-2001, revealed the prevalence of blindness to be 8.5%. Over 60% of blindness has been attributed to cataract alone.
Today modern microsurgical techniques utilizing latest equipment, lenses and surgical material, allow people to enjoy good, clear vision after their cataracts have been removed.
It is a cloudiness of the normally clear lens in the eye. It prevents the lens from focusing light onto the retina and hence causes unclear vision. As the cataract advances, this cloudiness of vision increases over a period of time until the vision is completely impaired.
Why does a cataract develop?
Cataract development is part of the normal ageing process. Almost all people above the age of 60 years have cataract of a variable degree, How-ever it can occur at an earlier age also. In early age in some people cataract development is aggravated by an eye injury, presence of diabetes, use of medications or other eye diseases. Rarely cataract may be present in the newborn as a developmental defect.
What are the symptoms of a developing cataract?
The symptoms of cataracts are variable. Most people notice that their vision gradually deteriorates – objects may begin to look yellow, hazy, blurred or distorted. Some people report double vision, or polyopia). Most people also find that they need more light to see clearly, or that they experience glare or haloes from lights at night. Most common problem encountered is increasing nearsightedness. In advanced cases, the cataract may be looks as a whitish-looking pupil.
When can one undergo Cataract Surgery?
Cataract surgery can be performed as soon as the patient feels difficulty in performing routine activities at work. It is not advisable to wait for the cataract to mature as unnecessary delay can make surgery difficult and leads to complications. Modern cataract surgery can be performed successfully in any season includingthe rainy season and summers.
What are the various types of Intraocular Lenses (IOLs) which can be implanted in the eye?
1) Monofocal IOLs – These lenses provide good distance vision and due to patients are not dependent on their distance glasses for daily activities. However, these patients typically require reading glasses after cataract surgery.
In the recent years, monofocal lenses have been designed with aspheric surfaces. These FDA approved aspheric or aberration-free IOLs greatly improve image quality by enhancing contrast, eliminating glare and haloes, and improving night vision.
2) Multifocal IOLs and Accommodative IOLs – These lenses are designed to provide good unaided distance and near vision with less dependence on glasses.
3) Toric IOLs – These are special lenses correct high cylindrical powers reducing the patient’s dependence on distance glasses.
What is the life of an Intraocular Lens?
Once the IOL is implanted in the eye, it remains in place for the remainder of one’s lifetime.
Is clear vision guaranteed after surgery?
Nowhere and no surgeon in the world can perform a surgery with guaranteed results. However, almost all the patients regain good vision following cataract surgery. In certain condition, eye disease or problems in the cornea, retina or optic nerve may decrease the potential for clear vision. However, it might not be possible to evaluate the condition of the retina, optic nerve, in advanced cataracts.
What are the possible complications that can occur with Cataract & IOL surgery?
Modern microsurgical techniques for cataract removal are highly successful procedures.
Some minor complications that can occur include a slight drooping of the eyelid, swelling around the eye, corneal haze, reflections or slight distortion from the lens implant, which are usually temporary. The chances for serious complications are negligible. Possible serious complications include infection, severe inflammation, and hemorrhage.
In a majority of cases these complications can be treated successfully or may resolve on their own with a good final restoration of vision.
Benefits of cataract surgery:
There are numerous benefits of cataract surgery, many of which cannot be measured statistically. These include: –
- Improved color vision – colors are brighter and more vivid
- Greater clarity of vision – vision is crisper and sharper
- Improved quality of life – studies have repeatedly shown that people enjoy an improved quality of life after successful cataract surgery. Many people can resume driving, reading, writing, watching television, sewing, household work and using a computer immediately after.
Even when retinal diseases or other problems prevent a total restoration of vision, the remaining vision is usually improved by cataract surgery restoration of vision.