Cataract is a disease of eye in which the normally clear lens becomes opaque or cloudy resulting in decreased vision of the person. Most of the cataracts are result of aging and occur in older people. Though it may occur in one eye only but it has been observed that a person with cataract in one eye usually develops cataract in the other eye too.
Patients with early cataract may not experience any symptoms but as the disease progresses, the patient may complain of the following symptoms:
Surgery to remove the cloudy part is the only real treatment for patients who cannot perform their day to day activities due to decreased vision. Cataract that does not cause any bothersome symptoms to the patient requires no surgical treatment.
Eye surgery for cataract is done to remove the lens, followed by placement of a man-made artificial lens (also known as intraocular lens or IOL) into the affected eye. Nowadays, three types of IOLs are available for replacement i.e. monofocal lens, multifocal lens and toric IOL.
The patient needs to get a thorough pre-operative assessment including eye examination, special eye tests and blood tests (especially blood sugar levels)
The patient should take the medicines in the eye as prescribed by the doctor.
The patient is instructed to take someone along with him/her on the day of the surgery to take care of him/her and drive back after the procedure is over
Phaco is a stitch less surgery done for cataract in which a small probe is used to emulsify the eye lens using ultrasound waves and then pull the broken and emulsified cataract through a small opening. This is followed by insertion of an imported multifocal contact lens into the eye. The incision is so small that it does not require any sutures and heals on its own. The patient is given the number for glasses almost after one week of the surgery or later depending upon the healing of the eye.
Phaco surgery is mostly performed as an outpatient procedure and the patient is discharged on the same day after brief observation period. However, in some cases with complication, the hospital stay of one or two days might be required.
Any kind of increased redness, pain or decrease in vision should be immediately reported to the doctor as these can occur due to infection in eye and require immediate management.
Although cataract surgery is quite a safe procedure, in some rare cases certain complications may occur:
The patient is kept in the recovery room for a few hours after the surgery and instructed to follow the guidelines: