The phacoemulsification method allows patients to regain vision and resume normal activities very quickly following surgery and is very safe.
This method involves creating a tiny incision on the cornea and removing the natural but clouded lens of the eye and placing an artificial lens where the natural lens was found. Contrary to popular belief this involves the use of ultrasound energy and not a laser. Recently Adelaide Eye & Laser Centre commenced using the Infiniti™ cataract removal system. This system offers enhanced ultrasound phacoemulsification modalities enabling flexibility in the way the cataract is removed thereby improving safety and rate of recovery.
Small incision cataract surgery
- Does not involve the routine use of injections or stitches around the eye.
- Is performed under topical anaesthesia with a light intravenous sedative.
- Takes 10-15 minutes per eye although the total length of your stay at the centre will be approximately 2 hours.
- Generally patches are not required to cover the eye after surgery unless the surgeon advises otherwise.
- Only one eye is operated on at a time. The second eye may undergo treatment the following week if necessary; usually the most affected eye is treated first. The surgeon will advise on this.
- The rate of recovery varies for each person but, as a general rule, vision improves over a 24 to 72 hour period.
Multifocal intraocular lenses
Recently improvements in intraocular lens design have made it possible to provide both distance and near vision correction without glasses. Some patients are good candidates for these lenses. Disadvantages include some halos at night and reduced intermediate near vision, eg reading music, using computers. Our surgical staff can advise on suitability.
Important Information about Intraocular Lenses
Intraocular lenses implanted during cataract surgery are a fundamental requirement for successful cataract surgery. These lenses are designed to provide the eye with a focal point determined as part of the pre-operative assessment. Most commonly the focus is set for the distance but it may be set for near. Some lenses may also provide more than one focal point to minimise dependency on glasses. Fundamental to achieving the intended outcome is selecting the correct power and style of intraocular lens. This requires a series of measurements and calculations prior to any surgery.
The equipment for these measurements and calculations is very accurate and the predictability is high but it is not possible to guarantee an outcome for any procedure since some information required for the calculations has to be assumed. In some instances patients may be required to wear thin spectacle lenses after surgery due to residual focusing errors that affects the level of vision without correction. An alternative to glasses in this situation may be surgery, either within the eye to exchange or supplement the intraocular lens used, or by laser vision correction. The risks and benefits of any surgery requires individual assessment, however the cost of any procedure is not covered as part of the fee for cataract surgery.