If you’ve noticed your vision becoming cloudy, it might be time to start thinking about cataract surgery.
Cataracts are a normal part of aging. Over many years, the lenses of your eyes might become less transparent and often thicker. According to the National Institute of Health, cataracts affect 5% of people aged 50 to 54, 50% of people aged 75 to 79, and almost 70% of those over the age of 80.
Cataract surgery is used to restore vision after your eye becomes clouded from cataracts. During the procedure, a professional will remove the clouded lens and replace it with an artificial lens, clearing up your vision.
The surgery itself might sound intimidating, but it’s one of the safest and most effective vision procedures performed today. A typical surgery only takes about 15 minutes and doesn’t require an overnight stay in the hospital.
Let’s explore the ins and outs of cataract surgery in Las Vegas, including the process, risks, benefits, and where to find the best surgeon.
Cataract Surgery: The Step-By-Step Process
To help you better understand the process of cataract surgery in Las Vegas, we’ll walk you through the procedure step by step — from preparation to recovery.
Before the Procedure
Around a week before your surgery, your eye doctor will perform a comprehensive eye exam, including a refraction test, to make sure that your eyes are healthy enough to proceed with surgery.
They will also perform an ultrasound test to measure the size and shape of your eye. This will determine the type of lens implant, or intraocular lens (IOL), they will use during the surgery.
If you have any questions about the surgery, this is the time to discuss them with your eye doctor.
During the Procedure
During the procedure, the cloudy lens inside your eye will be removed. In its place, your doctor will place the intraocular lens (IOL). This helps restore the clear vision you had before cataracts. An IOL will improve your vision by focusing light on the back of the eye. You won’t be able to feel it or see it — it becomes a permanent part of your eye.
The surgeon will first apply numbing eye drops to the surface of your eye. This ensures that the procedure will be completely pain-free. At most, you may experience a slight sensation of pressure on the eye.
You can expect to be at the surgical center for around 90 minutes to allow for preparation and postoperative evaluation. The surgery itself takes approximately 15 minutes, following these steps:
- A small incision is made along the cornea.
- A laser is used to break up the cloudy lens into smaller pieces.
- A suction device is used to remove these lens fragments from the eye.
- The artificial lens is inserted where your natural lens used to be, behind the pupil and iris.
After the Procedure
After cataract surgery, someone will have to drive you home. Your surgeon may give you a protective shield or special sunglasses to keep your eyes safe from bright light as your eye recovers.
The incision in your eye will heal on its own, without needing any stitches. You’ll likely need to use medicated eye drops for a few weeks to alleviate any mild discomfort.
In the days following the procedure, you might have some discomfort, including irritation and blurred vision. For at least the first week, you’ll need to keep your eye closed while showering or bathing, as exposure to water can cause an infection.
Depending on your specific needs and the type of procedure, your surgeon may give you additional recovery instructions.
Benefits of Cataract Surgery
In the days and weeks following your surgery, you can expect improved vision. Over 95% of those with healthy eyes who have cataract surgery experience an improvement in their vision. Objects may appear more crisp and clear — colors may even feel more vivid.
Cataract surgery can offer immediate relief. While your blurry vision may have made your day-to-day tasks more challenging — like driving, watching TV, or reading — post-surgery you can go back to everything you used to do. All of this can boost your confidence and give you more freedom.
Cataracts aren’t just inconvenient — they can lead to other eye problems. They can cause inflammation in the eyes, which can lead to glaucoma. Others with cataracts may have damaged retinas from diabetes. Surgery to remove these cataracts can prevent complications, further protecting your vision.
Risks and Complications
Millions of cataract surgeries are performed each year. The vast majority of them have excellent visual outcomes.
Complications after cataract surgery aren’t common, but there are a few risks to be aware of. These include:
- Drooping eyelid
- Dislocation of artificial lens
In rare cases, risks can include:
- Retinal detachment
- Secondary cataract
- Loss of vision
Most of these complications can be treated successfully. Your risk of complications increases if you have another issue with your eye or a serious medical condition.
In some cases, cataract surgery may not improve vision because of eye damage from other conditions, like glaucoma or macular degeneration. This is something you can discuss with your doctor before the procedure — you can evaluate and treat other eye problems before moving forward with cataract surgery.
Finding a High-Quality Surgeon in Las Vegas
Finding the right surgeon in Las Vegas is one of the most important decisions you can make. When dealing with something as important as your eyesight, you want a surgeon who is reliable, trustworthy, and affordable.
Here are a few factors you should consider in selecting a surgeon:
- Credentials and training
- Experience in removing cataracts
- Specialty in cataract removal surgery
- Available surgical options
- Affordability and insurance
At Brimhall Eye Center, we offer a premier cataract service with some of the best visual outcomes — in the top 1% across the US. Your cataract surgery experience with us is fully customizable. We offer a range of different surgery options, including dropless cataract surgery, at our center in Las Vegas.
We believe that every patient should be able to afford the treatment they need. We accept many types of health insurance and also offer different financing options. No matter your budget, you can find eye care to meet your needs.
Cataract Surgery From a Surgeon You Can Trust
If you’re suffering from cloudy vision, cataract surgery can help set you on the path to clearer, stronger vision. Whether it’s getting back to the hobbies you used to love or feeling more independent, cataract surgery can help you protect your vision for years to come.
Our ophthalmologists at Brimhall Eye Center can offer premium Las Vegas cataract surgery to get you towards the vision you’ve always dreamed of. We’ll work with you to ensure a smooth and painless experience from start to finish.
Ready to discuss your options for a treatment plan? Contact us to schedule a free consultation.