How Cataract Surgery Is Performed

Did you know, that a large percentage of the adult population in the country is affected by cataracts? This condition, even though painless, reduces one’s ability to clearly see colours, increases glare and can cause blindness in worst case scenarios. A sufferer, should seriously consider surgery if their condition has worsened to the extent that simple daily activities start to become a struggle. During surgery, the eye lens which is affected by a cataract is removed. It is important to remember that cataract removal differs from cataract laser surgery, which is used to correct irregularities in the eye’s lens.

Cataract removal is performed on an outpatient basis; meaning that the patient is not required to spend the night in hospital under observation. This type of surgery doesn’t require anaesthetic as eye drops can be administered to numb the eye and reduce pain, if a child is undergoing the treatment then anaesthetic may be required. Prior to the operation, the surgeon, usually an ophthalmic or ophthalmologist will assess the state of your eyes and overall health. It is during the assessment that your eyes will be measured to determine what size artificial lens will replace your natural ones.

The procedure is fairly straightforward and commonly only takes between 30 to 45 minutes. The surgeon begins by making a small incision on the cornea, a tiny ultrasound probe is then inserted, causing the cataract to break into pieces. These pieces are then removed by another specialised probe and a small plastic lens is inserted into the cornea. The lens is folded in half when being inserted, then unfolds and takes the exact shape of the removed lens. This procedure is referred to as phacoemulsification in medical terminology.

cataract surgery

The other type of cataract surgery is known as extracapsular, this is an alternative option for a dense cataract that cannot be broken into pieces. The surgeon makes a bigger incision and removes the cataract in one piece; rather than breaking it. An artificial lens is then used to replace the removed cataract, additional stiches are required in order to close the opened large wounds. After the surgery, the patient is provided with an eye patch which should be worn for some time, so that the eye can fully recover.

The other type of cataract surgery, done on rare occasions, is the intracapsular cataract surgery. This procedure involves removing both the lens and the capsule. This surgery is used on rare occasions; most commonly on patients who have experienced eye traumas.

By Sarah McDowell; a Search Consultant at http://www.fdcstudio.co.uk/ providing Digital Marketing Services throughout the UK

Photo source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/usnavy/7335691092/

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