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Posted on 10-19-2017

This is Not Your Father's Cataract Surgery

Over the past decade, we have seen the advancement of premium intraocular lenses and femtosecond laser as an option to standard cataract surgery. But what exactly does this mean to you? And why is your doctor giving you a choice to where there was once a one-size-fits-all intraocular lens option with cataract surgery? Modern cataract surgery is not your father’s cataract surgery.

Let’s discuss the terminology:

Cataract – is a clouding of the natural lens of the eye. The lens focuses images onto the “film” of the eye, or the retina. The natural lens can be found behind the iris, or the colored part of the eye. The pupil is an opening in the iris in which you can see the natural lens.

Intraocular lens (IOL) – is a tiny artificial plastic lens optic that is placed in the eye to focus your vision when the cloudy cataract is removed. The IOL sits in the same bag or encasing that housed your natural lens.

Monofocal IOL – an intraocular lens that focuses at a single distance, usually far distance, requiring reading glasses for all near and intermediate vision activities.

Toric IOL – an intraocular lens that corrects for astigmatism inside of the eye, versus outside of the eye as with a pair of glasses. This type of intraocular lens can decrease dependence on glasses for far distance after cataract surgery if you have astigmatism. Reading glasses will be needed for all near and intermediate activities.

Extended Depth of Focus IOL – an intraocular lens that extends the near vision depth of focus giving you vision at all ranges from distance, intermediate and near. Reading glasses may be needed for some near vision activities.

Femtosecond Laser – is a laser procedure performed in conjunction with traditional cataract surgery, performing several steps of the surgery and treating small amounts of astigmatism. This procedure can decrease dependence on glasses for far distance after cataract surgery if you have astigmatism. Reading glasses will be needed for all near and intermediate vision activities.

When you schedule a cataract evaluation at ECNV with one of our physicians, careful measurements will be obtained. Your doctor will discuss your options with you as not all patients are candidates for every option. Together, you can decide on the best option for your lifestyle.

For more information on cataract surgery and your options, visit our website or download our Cataract Surgery Brochure. Cataract Evaluations can be made in both our Springfield/Burke and Woodbridge locations by calling 703-451-6111 or by Requesting An Appointment on our website. 

POSTED BY WENDY FORD, COMT

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