Cataract Surgery is a procedure that removes a clouded lens from your eye. In most cases the lens that is removed is replaced with an artificial lens. It is done when the clear lens on your eye becomes cloudy, blocking light from entering the eye and causing visual disturbances. The goal of cataract surgery is to restore clear vision.
Length of the procedure: less than 1 hour
Hospital Stay: Most patents are released form care the same day as there cataract surgery.
Recovery before traveling home: Patients seeking a cataract surgery through medical tourism can return home 48 hours after their procedure.
Travel Tip: Your vision may be blurry in the days immediately following your cataract procedure. It is best to travel with a companion that can help you during this time. You may also prefer a handicap accessible hotel room to make recovery safer and more convenient.
The cataract surgery begins with the administration of sedative or general anesthesia. The surgeon will use a microscope to exam the eye and make a tiny incision. Then, they will remove the damaged lens.
The lens can be removed in one of two ways. The surgeon will remove it with a surgical instrument and suction, or they will use sound waves to break the lens up and then suction it. The method of removal depends upon the type of cataract you have.
Once the lens is removed the surgeon will place the artificial lens. The lens is called an artificial intraocular lens. After the lens is placed they will close the tiny incision they made with tiny sutures or self sealing sutures.
After the Procedure
After the cataract surgery you will be taken to recovery. Once the sedative or anesthesia has worn off you will be released from care. At this time you will return to your hotel room to recover. You will be sent home with a patch over the eye that was operated on. Your surgeon will also require that you wear dark sunglasses when you are outside. You will be given anti-inflammatory eye drops, along with antibiotic eye drops to help with healing.
The day after your procedure you will have a follow-up with your surgeon. At this time the patch on your eye will be removed. If you have sutures that need to be removed you will require another follow-up with your surgeon at a later date.
Self care after cataract surgery:
• Wash your hands before touching your eye
• Avoid getting soap or water in your eye for 3 to 4 days
• Light activity within 24 hours
• Avoid strenuous activity or heavy lifting for 10 weeks
• Get doctor approval before driving
• Do not rub eye
• No eye make-up or eye creams for 2 weeks
• No hot tubs or whirlpools for 4 to 8 weeks
• Return to work in 4 to 5 days
Most people heal from cataract surgery within 10 weeks of their procedure. The outcome for patients who have cataract surgery is very good. Most patients report a significant improvement in their vision once they are healed from the procedure.
Risks and Complications
As is with any procedure there are risks associated with cataract surgery. The following is a list of the most common risks and complications:
• Reaction to anesthesia or medication
• Incomplete lens removal
• Vision problems
• Additional surgery required
Contact your physician if any of the following occur:
• New problem with eye develops
• New eye symptom develops
• Severe eye pain develops
• Reported symptoms
• Vision gets worse
• Any visual concerns
• Any sign of infection