A cataract is a hardening and clouding of the eye’s natural lens. The majority of cataracts are due simply to the aging process – the older a person gets, the more likely they are to develop a cataract.
- Glare and halos around bright lights
- Blurry or double vision
- Difficulty distinguishing colors
- Difficulty seeing or driving at night
- Frequent prescription changes for glasses
Not long ago, persons with advanced cataracts were considered to be blind. In reality, the majority of people do not have permanent vision loss because they still have functional nerve tissue in the retina. Once the cataract is removed, normal vision can be restored.
Currently, there is no medical treatment to reverse or prevent the development of cataracts. Once they form, there is only one way to achieve clear vision again, and that is to physically remove the cataract from inside the eye and replace it with an intraocular lens (IOL).
Intraocular Lenses (IOL)
Dr. Greer uses the latest technique of removing the “old” cloudy lens and replacing it with an IOL best suited for the patient’s individual eye. This means not only will a patient be able to have clear vision once again, they may not have to wear the strong glasses they once did, greatly lessening their dependence from eyeglasses.
Monofocal IOLs provide a single zone of clear focus and are usually targeted to provide clear distance vision when patients do not have astigmatism (blurred vision due either to the irregular shape of the cornea, the clear front cover of the eye, or sometimes the curvature of the lens inside the eye). Toric Monofocal IOLs or Laser Cataract Surgery can be used for patients that have astigmatism. Patients with either of these types of Monofocal IOLs will typically require the use of bifocals or reading glasses for near and intermediate vision.
Multifocal IOLs and Accommodating IOLs can potentially provide a more broad range of vision: near, intermediate and distance, with minimal, if any, need for glasses or contact lenses. Patients with astigmatism that want a more broad range of vision can also have their astigmatism corrected when choosing one of these lenses. Which lens is right for you depends on your ocular health, occupational needs, and lifestyle interests.
Laser Refractive Cataract Surgery
Laser Refractive Cataract Surgery is a breakthrough procedure as unique as the eye itself. It significantly improves the precision of several of the most critical steps in cataract surgery. This allows your procedure to be customized to your eye’s unique characteristics, resulting in better visual outcomes while potentially making cataract surgery even safer.
For patients with astigmatism and for patients who wish to reduce or eliminate their need for glasses, Laser Refractive Cataract Surgery offers some distinct advantages over traditional cataract surgery. It uses a femtosecond laser to accomplish many of the more challenging surgical steps traditionally performed by hand. The precise, reproducible steps performed by the laser mean better lens positioning, less trauma to the eye, and more predictable visual results which are especially important with advanced IOLs.
Dr. Greer performs cataract surgery on an outpatient basis at several outpatient surgery centers and hospitals in the River Valley region. Patients typically arrive one hour before surgery and leave about one hour after the surgery. The procedure itself usually takes 10-15 minutes under topical anesthesia and requires no stitches. Recovery is quick with the majority of patients noticing a dramatic improvement of their vision by the next day. Cataract surgery is the most common surgical procedure in the United States today.
The response of our patients has been rewarding. Listed below is an example of how cataract surgery has enhanced our patients’ lives. Individual results may vary.
“Cataracts had developed in both my eyes and had severely impacted my life. I was unable to distinguish colors and that forced me to quit my profession as a stained glass artist. I also had to quit driving. This was a sad and frustrating time for me. I’m glad to say that Dr. Greer has now performed cataract surgery on each of my eyes. With clear vision restored and the ability to see colors, I am driving and working in stained glass once again. This surgery has given me a brand new world.”
Greg Green, Stained Glass Artist