A Cataract is a slow, progressive clouding of the eye's natural lens resulting from the normal aging process of the human lens.
A Cataract is a slow, progressive clouding of the eye's natural lens resulting from the normal aging process of the human lens. This process is the result of the formation of multiple layers of lens tissue as well as the clumping of lens proteins causing the lens to loose its clarity and become turbid, thus interfering with the passage of light through the eye to the retina. Over time,Cataracts typically lead to blurred or fuzzy vision and increased light sensitivity.
The amount of cloudiness within the lens may vary (especially by age), but common symptoms ofCataracts include:
• Blurred vision
• Glare and reduced vision in bright light
• Halos around lights
• Double vision in one eye
• Frequent eyeglass prescription changes
• Poor night vision
• Need for brighter light when reading
• Fading of colors, particularly inability to see blues and purples
"INJECTION-Free" means that the eye is anesthetized with anesthetic eye drops (Topical Anesthesia) instead of needle injections behind the eye, thus eliminating the risk of bleeding from the needle possibly injuring a blood vessel, or the Optic nerve. That is why eye drop anesthesia is beneficial for patients who are taking blood thinners for the prevention of strokes or blood clots. Our patients can continue with their blood thinners (like Aspirin, Coumadin, Plavix..etc), even when having Cataract surgery. In addition, eye drop anesthesia allows patients to see well within minutes following surgery.
"STITCH-Free" means a self-sealing, microsurgical incision is used. Dr Jaoude uses a process called phacoemulsification to remove the Cataract: A small probe enters the eye through a tiny incision, emulsifies the Cataract and gently vacuums it out. Most of the time, microsurgical incisions require no uncomfortable stitches, therefore minimizing post-operative restrictions.
"PATCH-Free" means literally just that. Using these advanced techniques, no uncomfortable vision-obstructing patches are needed. Vision normally returns within minutes after surgery. This is especially important to patients who do not have good vision in the un-operated eye. Many of our patients enjoy normal activities immediately following Cataract surgery.
Then an intraocular lens implant made of acrylic or silicon material will be injected into the eye to replace the natural lens which will help focus the light on the retina. Because we can calculate the power of this lens implant using laser technology, we can allow the patient to see with a minimum need of glasses following Cataract surgery.
That's how a lot of people will tell you: "I wore glasses all my life for the past seventy years and now I had Cataract surgery and don't have to wear my glasses anymore.
There are several types of Cataracts:
• Senile Cataracts are the most common form of Cataracts. They are associated with normal aging, causing the lens to harden and turn cloudy. Generally, they affect middle-aged people or older.
• Traumatic Cataracts may result from injuries: a sharp blow, an electrical or chemical burn, or a very high dose of radiation.
• Secondary Cataracts are formed due to certain medications or eye diseases like diabetes, and the use of Steroid which can also cause the lens to cloud.
• In rare cases, children can be born with Cataracts either due to heredity or because the mother had a disease such as German measles during pregnancy.
Usually, a person who develops a Cataract in one eye will develop a Cataract in the other eye as well, although the second Cataract may not develop for several years.
Cataracts are the # 1 cause of reversible blindness around the world because not every country has the man power and/or technology to take care of this problem.
Currently there is no medical treatment to reverse or prevent the development of Cataracts.
Surgery for Cataracts is a brief procedure. It usually takes 5- 15 minutes to complete. In the past, most Cataract surgery patients remained in the hospital following the operation. But with improvements in techniques and equipment, doctors can perform most Cataract procedures as ambulatory surgery, and the patient can return home the same day. Today, more than 97-99 percent of Cataract surgeries are successful. Cataract surgery is considered one of the safest surgical procedures performed in the medical field.
Since Cataract is defined as the clouding of the natural lens in the eye and during Cataract surgery we do remove the cloudy lens. The lens is needed to focus the light on the retina. Most Cataract surgery patients receive an "intraocular lens implant" to replace the natural lens. This acrylic or silicone implant resembles a small contact lens. The doctor inserts it in the front part of the eye during surgery. The implanted lens is a permanent replacement for the natural lens; except in rare cases, it will never be taken out.
In the days immediately following surgery, get plenty of rest and avoid heavy lifting or other types of strenuous activity. For several days following surgery, you may experience some discomfort in or around the eye. Your eye will take several weeks to heal completely.
To protect the eye and encourage healing, you should follow all instructions for using eye drops and other prescribed medications. If you wear glasses, you may resume wearing them as a protective measure. The prescription may no longer be correct, but this will not harm your eye and your vision should still be acceptable. In fact, all patients should wear some form of eye protection (such as sunglasses) during the days following surgery. Your doctor will also give you an eye protector to wear at night for two to three days.
It is not usually necessary to treat Cataracts unless they interfere with daily life. The most common forms of Cataracts can take up to 10 or 20 years to reach a stage where they seriously impair vision. As a first step, an ophthalmologist (a doctor who specializes in the medical and surgical treatment of the eye) conducts a thorough examination to detect Cataracts. Then, the patient and the ophthalmologist decide together whether removal is necessary. This decision is usually based on the fact that vision could not be improved with glasses or contact lenses or if the patient is complaining of glare and halos when driving at night.
Patients who have received an intraocular lens implant may notice improvement as soon as the doctor finishes the surgery. At some point after the operation, usually three to eight weeks, patients will receive a new eyeglass prescription that should also improve vision if not already perfect. A lot of people may end up not needing glasses following Cataract surgery because we do special calculation of the lens implant to minimize your need for glasses. However, the need of glasses following surgery will depend on how the eye heals and if you have any residual astigmatism. Most people will need reading glasses following Cataract surgery. However, If you are interested in being independent of glasses for distance and reading, the FDA has recently approved NEW Bifocal lens implants “RESTOR, REZOOM and CRYSTALENS” which would Provide distance as well as near vision.
A RESTOR Lens is a Bifocal lens implant that was recently approved by the FDA to be used in Cataract patients. This lens is very similar to the lens implant that used following Cataract surgery… however it was modified by placing APODIZED rings on the surface of the lens so that it works like a bifocal lens. Patient who elect to have a RESTOR Lens are expected to become independent of glasses for distance as well as for near in most instances following Cataract surgery.
To be a good candidate for the RESTOR Lens you should have the following:
- The patient has to have a major interest in being independent of glasses and contact lenses for distance as well as for near
- Healthy eye with the exception of Cataract
- No Macular Degeneration
- No advanced Glaucoma or Diabetic damage to the retina
- Minimal amount of Astigmatism
- Realistic Expectations
Insurance company will cover the cost of Cataract surgery since it is considered a medical condition. However Medicare and other insurance companies will not cover the extra cost for the RESTOR Implant since independence of Reading glasses is considered a cosmetic procedure. Medicare and Other insurances will cover the cost of Cataract surgery The patient will be responsible for the extra cost of the RESTOR Lens Implant only. If you are interested in becoming independent of your glasses and contact lenses for distance and reading following your Cataract surgery, please discuss this matter with Dr Jaoude to see if RESTOR lens is a good choice for you
This will give patients independence of glasses and contact lenses for distance as well as for reading. Since the patient now dose not have Cataract … Insurance companies will not cover any part of this procedure.
In about 10 to 50 percent of patients who have a Cataract removed, the capsule (The membrane that used to surround the Cataract and is used during the surgery to support the lens implant) becomes cloudy several months or years after the original surgery. Often this condition is referred to as a "secondary Cataract." However, this does not mean that the patient has another Cataract; it is only the capsule —not the artificial lens — that has become cloudy.
f this cloudiness blurs your vision, a clear opening can be painlessly made in the center of the posterior capsule membrane with a YAG laser. This procedure is done on an outpatient basis, and only takes a few minutes, without injections. This is the only instance in which a laser can be used for a Cataract-related treatment