It is estimated that cataracts affect more than twenty-million individuals in America today. While some individuals experience them earlier than others, a majority of all people will eventually develop cataracts, beginning as early as the age of forty.
Simply put, a cataract is a tinting or clouding in the eye’s natural lens, which can obstruct the passage of light. This clouding of the eye typically worsens with time and, if left untreated, can severely impair one’s vision and even cause eventual blindness.
Cataract Treatment Options
When symptoms or vision changes are minor, one may not require any treatment at all for their cataracts, but should ensure to have their eyes regularly examined by a qualified ophthalmologist or optometrist to monitor the progression of the condition.
For those experiencing noticeable vision loss, cataract surgery is the only option. Fortunately modern day advancements in eye care have changed what is possible for patients afflicted with cataracts. Cataract surgery can now be done swiftly and painlessly and with little to no downtime. By taking advantage of a cutting edge surgical procedure known as refractive lens exchange, patients can have their cataracts treated with ease and dramatically improve their vision.
Cataract surgery procedure
The procedure is done by replacing the natural cataract afflicted lens of the eye with an artificial one, known as an intraocular lens or IOL. There are several different lens options available, which can assist you to see clearly at all distances and greatly reduce or even eliminate the need for glasses.
A standard IOL provides clear vision without correction for nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism. Insurance will generally cover the cost of a standard lens for cataract surgery. Advanced lenses are not considered a necessity by insurance companies so patients will need to bear the difference in cost or continue to use corrective lenses.
At our Orange County location, we have experience with insurance coverage requirements and can help patients determine what their insurance will cover. We also can help patients apply for medical financing to cover the gap between a standard IOL and the more advanced options. At Atlantis Eyecare, the goal is to help our patients achieve clear vision with minimal dependence on corrective lenses.
Surgery is done on an outpatient basis, one eye at a time. Anesthetic eye drops are administered and once they have taken effect surgery is begun. The ophthalmologist then makes a tiny (3 mm) incision in the clear capsule surrounding the lens. A small ultrasonic probe is inserted and the lens is gently removed in segments. The new lens is then implanted. The lenses are folded before insertion into the eye capsule using the same small incision.
Here at Atlantis Eye Care in Orange County, we specialize in this procedure and offer a variety of high quality artificial lens options. Modern IOLs allow vision to be corrected from within the eye, restoring clear sharp vision requiring little to no future correction.
Cataract surgery is one of the most frequently performed surgeries in America and has a 98% success rate, according to All About Vision. Truly a life improving enhancement for millions of people.
Recovering from cataract surgery is relatively mild but still requires about a week before vision is fully restored. Patients can usually return to most daily activities within a day following surgery. Patients can usually return to work after a week. The second surgery is scheduled once the doctor is satisfied with the progress of the first eye. This is to protect patients from potential problems should an infection occur, which is rare. Eye MDs at Atlantis Eyecare Orange County do not take risks with their patient’s precious vision.
One recent advance in lens replacement for cataracts is the development of a special lens for those with astigmatism. Astigmatism is a common problem caused by an irregular shape to the cornea which causes blurred vision. Now during cataract surgery, a Toric IOL can be placed which compensates for the flattened shape of the cornea. It can give sharp vision either at reading distance or far distance. Corrective lenses will still be needed to correct for either nearsightedness or farsightedness but blurring, halos and other distortions experienced by those with astigmatism will be gone or greatly diminished.
Top Refractive Lens Surgeons
Our refractive surgeons are among the most experienced in the state and are national leaders on the topic of cataract surgery. Each is highly trained, board certified and expert in their field. Equipped with the full array of leading-edge advancements in cataract surgery, our team can quickly and painlessly treat cataracts, dramatically improving vision and often greatly reducing dependence upon eyeglasses. With state-of-the-art cataract centers in Huntington Beach, Newport Beach, Laguna Hills and elsewhere, we are proud to provide the best cataract surgery Orange County has to offer.