WHAT IS A CATARACT?
WHEN DO CATARACTS NEED TREATMENT?
BEFORE YOUR SURGERY
On the day of surgery, take all of your regular medications as you normally would. Do not stop blood thinners (e.g. aspirin, Plavix, warfarin, etc), and take all other regular medications as well. If you have ever taken the drug Flomax (tamsulosin), please inform your surgeon.
You will be given a prescription for 3 different eyedrops. Please purchase these before the surgery, and start using them 3 days prior (e.g. if the surgery is scheduled for Friday, start taking them on Tuesday). You will continue to use these drops after the surgery.
AFTER YOUR CATARACT OPERATION
You will need to arrange for a responsible adult to take you home from the surgery (this is the hospital’s policy). It is advisable to have someone stay with you on the night of surgery, although this is not necessary. When you leave from the surgery, you are allowed to resume all normal activities except: no exercise, no heavy lifting, and no swimming for 1-2 weeks. Try to keep your eyelids clean, and do not allow water into your eye for 1 week after surgery.
Your eye may feel scratchy or irritated for a few days or weeks after the surgery; this usually resolves on its own with time. Your vision may be blurry for the first few days after surgery before it starts to clear up. Sometimes your eye may feel dry or sensitive even for several months after cataract surgery and you may require lubricating eye drops to help manage this.
You will usually have a check-up at your surgeons office the day after your surgery.
TYPES OF INTRA-OCULAR LENSES
Cataract surgery involves removing the cloudy lens and inserting a replacement lens, which is called an IntraOcular Lens or IOL. You have a choice of three types of IOLs:
1. Monofocal Foldable IOL
This lens provides sharp vision and image quality in varying light conditions and minimizes the incidence of halos and glare.
With this lens you can choose to make your eyes more farsighted (better for distance), or nearsighted (better for near work). You cannot have both, unless you choose to make one eye better for distance, one eye better for near tasks.
After implantation, your vision will likely be very good but you will need glasses for distance or near vision (depending on which you choose). Patients with significant astigmatism will also need glasses to correct astigmatism at all distances (both near and far).
2. Monofocal Foldable TORIC IOL
With the same benefits as the Foldable Lens, the TORIC Lens also has a unique optic design to reduce or eliminate astigmatism.
Similar to the Foldable Lens, with the toric lens you can choose to make your eyes either more farsighted or more nearsighted (or one of each). Most patients will not require glasses to correct astigmatism, but may still require glasses for some activities.
3. Multi-Focal Foldable IOL
The Multi-Focal Lens provides a full range of vision from Near to Far Distance. After implantation, 80% of patients are spectacle free and do not need any glasses. This lens also provides correction for astigmatism.
However, this lens can sometimes cause more glare in your vision, especially at night. Not all patients are suitable candidates for multi-focal lenses. Not all patients will be completely free of glasses. If you have questions, please discuss them with your surgeon.
“So which lens should I choose?”
This is a decision that takes into account many factors: whether or not you have astigmatism, whether you want to be free from glasses (and to what extent), and whether you wish to pay for your lenses. You will have an appointment with Dr Nathoo to discuss your options and to choose your lens.