What is a cataract?
A cataract is the natural clouding of the normally clear lens of the eye. The lens is used for focusing light onto the retina (back of the eye) so images appear clear but when you have a cataract these images become distorted. Cataracts usually progress gradually over time and are a normal part of the aging process. A cataract can also develop rapidly as in a case of severe trauma to the eye. Other factors that may lead to cataract formation are exposure to excessive ultraviolet light, diabetes, smoking, or the use of certain medications such as steroids. Cataracts are very common generally affecting both eyes with over 3.5 million cataract surgeries performed in the U.S. each year. There is no treatment to prevent cataracts. The only way to experience clear vision is to have your cataracts removed.
What are symptoms of cataracts?
Cataracts cause a variety of visual complaints such as blurred or cloudy vision, difficulty reading small print, trouble driving at night due to glare, halos around lights, difficulty seeing street signs, needing more light to read and occasionally double vision in one eye.
When should I have cataract surgery?
Despite being told you have cataracts, it does not mean you have to have cataract surgery. The decision to have surgery is yours. If your vision is interfering with your quality of life including impairing your ability to drive, read, watch television, or do other activities you enjoy it may be time to consider cataract surgery.
“As a professional photographer for over 33 years, I have a taken thousands of pictures for families, wedding’s and children. I realized my eyes sight was becoming a serious problem when I could no longer see my camera focus on the subject. I had cataracts and I knew I needed help. I began my search for the best doctor that specializes in cataract surgery.
I found Dr. Dana Greenberg with the Greenberg Laser Eye Center. After meeting with Dr. Greenberg and her staff about helping me restore my vision, I felt comfortable and at ease putting my trust into a doctor that recognized how important my eyes were not only to me personally but professionally too. Within a week we were able to schedule one surgery for my right eye. Luckily I had a quick recovery I was able to schedule my other eye a week later. My vision is now 20/20. Dr. Greenberg not only gave me back my eyesight but was able to give me a better quality of life both personally and for my photography business. I highly recommend Dr. Greenberg and the Greenberg Laser Eye Center for their professionalism, knowledge and comfort. However don’t just take my word for it, take a look at my photography.”
Cataract surgery is performed on an outpatient basis and takes less than 20 minutes. Your eyes will be done on separate days, usually two weeks apart, and you will need a driver the day of surgery. The procedure requires no shots or stitches. When you arrive you will be given a mild sedative to relax you and keep you comfortable. Dr. Greenberg will numb your eye with topical anesthetic eye drops. The surgery involves a process called Phacoemulsification.
A tiny incision about 1/8” is made in the cornea (clear part) of your eye. Then using a thin probe, Dr. Greenberg will break up your cataract using ultrasound and gently remove the pieces of the cataract. Once the cataract is removed, an Intraocular Lens (IOL) is placed in the thin capsular bag which held your natural lens. Once in place it will not move and you will not feel it. The natural pressure in your eye will close the incision. You will be home within a couple of hours. Dr. Greenberg will see you the next day and you will be instructed on using eye drops as your eye heals. Most patients return to normal activities within a day with few restrictions. Cataract surgery is highly successful with 98% of patients reporting their vision was improved after the procedure.
When Dr. Greenberg removes your cataract she will replace your natural lens with an intraocular lens (IOL). A monofocal lens is focused at only one distance. They have equal power in all regions of the lens and can provide high quality distance vision. Patients who have monofocal lenses implanted require glasses after.
There are several types of intraocular lenses available: Monofocal, Toric, and Multifocal. Toric and Multifocal IOLS are considered specialty lenses. During your eye exam with Dr. Greenberg she will determine which intraocular lens you would be a candidate for and discuss the benefits with you. To schedule an eye exam with Dr. Greenberg please call (248)649-2820.