Replacement of eye lens improves vision

If your daily activity and ability to perform certain tasks such as reading or driving is affected by cataracts, then your doctor may recommend cataract surgery.

Cataracts, or clouding or thickening of the lens of the eye, can happen at any age, but is more likely in older people. It is also possible to have cataracts but not have your vision affected by the condition. In some cases, surgery may not be needed for many years until the condition worsens.

Cataract surgery involves removing the lens of your eye using either ultrasound energy or laser technology. The surgeon replaces your natural lens with a plastic or silicone lens, called an intraocular lens or IOC, which gets implanted in the space where your own lens was. You will be able to see clearly out of the new lens and it will essentially become part of your eye. You will not feel any pain or discomfort from the new lens.

Cataract surgery is an outpatient procedure meaning you’ll be able to go home the same day. Your surgeon will apply local anesthesia (numbing the area so you won’t feel anything) as well as medication to help you relax during the surgery. You will be awake but will not feel any pain.

If you’re having both eyes done, you may need two separate surgeries to allow the one eye to heal. Recovery may also involve taking it easy at first, not being over and putting pressure on the eye, avoiding bright light, and wearing an eye shield at night to protect the surgical site. If you wear glasses, you will still need to wear them. Cataract surgery does not correct your vision.

To schedule an appointment with a specialist at Main Line Health, call 1.866.CALL.MLH (1.866.225.5654) or use our secure online appointment request form.