Cataract Surgery - Overview
Cataract surgery is a routine eye surgery in which the old lens is removed and replaced with an artificial lens. The lens in patients suffering from cataract is cloudy and interferes in a normal vision. This is why it needs to be removed. This surgical procedure is highly effective with small number of potential complications. It efficiently restores previously damaged vision and may significantly reduce, if not eliminate, the need for glasses.
It is estimated that cataract surgery is one of the most frequently performed surgeries in the Unites States.
The recovery after cataract surgery is successful and patients are released from the hospital the very day of the surgery. The operated eye is covered with a patch which prevents potential infection. Infection is also controlled with specific eye drops prescribed by the doctor. In majority of cases patients return to their every day activities one day after the surgery. Prior being discharged all the patients are given instructions on what to do and how to behave immediately after the surgery as well as during the entire recovery time.
Recovery after Cataract Surgery
It is essential for a patient to have someone who will drive him/ her home. The operated eyes are too sensitive and a patient is not supposed to drive himself/ herself. It is normal to experience blurred vision during the first 24 hours after the surgery. Sensitivity to light and mild eye discomfort, burning sensation or temporary ache are possible as well. Pain killers may take care of these side effects.
Patients are advised to rest at least for 24 hour after the surgery. They are prescribed artificial tears and explained how to use them. Some eye drops may sting or burn but they will effectively reduce an inflammation and accelerate the process of healing.
The operated eye/ eyes are not supposed to be touched, rubbed or exposed to pressure of any kind. During sleep the operated eye must be covered with a patch.
During the first week after the operation the eye adapts to new circumstances. Sensitivity to light reduces drastically while scratchy sensation may linger. Women are advised not to wear make-up a couple of weeks after the surgery.
Extreme sports, heavy and strenuous activities are forbidden during the first week of the recovery. On the other hand, patients are allowed to walk and perform light chores.
The entire recovery lasts approximately a month. After that period of time the operated eye comes back to normal. Complete stabilization of color perception is achieved after a month or two. And finally, the usage of eye drops may need to continue for a while since eyes can remain dry for certain time after the surgery.