One of the most common problems seen in elderly patients is cataract formation. The lens of the eye, which is normally clear and allows light to focus properly onto the back of the eye, becomes progressively cloudy with age, causing significant visual disturbances. When a cataract has progressed, the vision can no longer be corrected with eyeglasses. The most common cataract symptoms are difficulty reading and driving, significant glare from bright lights, and difficulty doing normal day-to-day activities. Besides age, other risk factors for cataract formation include diabetes, smoking, excessive sun exposure, eye trauma, and steroid medications.
The only way to remove a cataract is through cataract eye surgery. Over 1.4 million cataract surgeries are performed annually in the United States, and 98% of these proceed without complications. Our Brooklyn cataract eye surgeons perform the most advanced cataract surgery available, using a small incision with no stitch required. The surgery is conveniently performed in an ambulatory surgery center using numbing drops as the only necessary anesthesia, and patients go home the same day. After the cataract is removed, an artificial lens implant is placed in the eye to focus light properly. This intraocular lens implant (IOL) will correct for nearsightedness and farsightedness, lessening the dependence on distance glasses after surgery. Visual recovery is rapid- most people report better vision within one week, and some see better as early as the day after cataract surgery.
Our Eye Surgeons Offer New Advances in Cataract Surgery
Ophthalmology Associates of Bay Ridge is proud to offer Femtosecond Laser-Assisted Cataract Surgery using the LenSx® laser. While traditional cataract surgery requires manual incisions with a blade for some of the steps, we can now use an advanced laser to carry out those steps in a more precise manner. This laser can also assist in breaking down the cataract, thereby reducing the total ultrasound energy needed to remove the cataract. Recently, several exciting new lens implant designs have become available that can further reduce the dependence on glasses after cataract surgery. The eye surgeons at Ophthalmology Associates of Bay Ridge are proud to offer these advanced intraocular lens technologies to our patients, providing a full array of options to maximize the quality of vision after cataract eye surgery. During your examination, our cataract eye surgeon will discuss which implant may be best for you.
Multifocal intraocular lens implants (Alcon Restor® and Technis Multifocal®) are designed to improve both distance AND reading vision after cataract surgery. The main benefit of a multifocal lens implant is to achieve independence from glasses for both distance and reading vision tasks after cataract surgery. While individual results may vary, patients report approximately 85% independence from glasses when a multifocal implant is placed in both eyes after cataract eye surgery, compared to 15% independence from glasses with a standard lens implant.
Toric intraocular lens implants (Alcon Acrysof Toric IQ®) are designed to treat astigmatism in patients undergoing cataract surgery to provide the sharpest distance vision possible without glasses. The astigmatism-correcting implant can be used in place of the conventional lens implant using the same techniques employed during traditional cataract eye surgery. Therefore, there is minimal added risk to using a toric lens implant. This implant is an excellent option for patients with high amounts of astigmatism. If you have astigmatism, your eye surgeon will explain all the options currently available to reduce dependence on glasses and which option is best for you.