Have a Cataract Question? We Have Answers
If you’ve been diagnosed with a cataract, you probably have concerns and questions. No worries. We are here for you and happy to help. You’re in good hands with the experienced ophthalmologists at Eye Medical Clinic, who are pros at diagnosing and treating this all-too-common condition.
A cataract is a clouding of the eye’s natural lens that blocks the lens from being able to focus light on the retina. Many people mistakenly think a cataract is a growth on the eye, but it’s not.
Cataracts are the most common cause of vision loss in people over age 50. According to Prevent Blindness America, cataracts currently affect more than 22 million Americans age 50 and older.
Cataract symptoms can vary from person to person, but the most common complaints include:
As a cataract worsens, traditional contact lenses and glasses will no longer be enough to correct your vision. At this time, surgery is needed to replace the natural lens of the eye. It is important to understand that cataracts cannot be treated with medication, eye drops or lifestyle changes and they will not heal on their own. Cataracts must be surgically removed in order for vision to be restored.
The question of when is the right time for cataract surgery is a very individual one. However, most experts agree that when a cataract begins to negatively affect your life and your daily activities, that is the time to talk to your doctor about cataract surgery.
During cataract surgery, your cataract surgeon will make a tiny incision in your eye to gently remove the cloudy lens and replace it with a clear artificial lens. You won’t be able to feel the new lens and it can’t be seen. It is designed to stay inside your eye permanently.
The incision made during cataract surgery is tiny and stitches are not required. It will heal completely by itself. Recovery time is impressively fast, thanks to advances in technology. Most of our patients return to normal activities within 24 to 48 hours of their procedure.
If you choose standard cataract surgery with a standard monofocal lens replacement, it’s likely you will still need glasses or contacts or even reading glasses afterward, depending on your current visual needs. But today, there are many cataract surgery options that can reduce or sometimes even eliminate your need for glasses after cataract surgery. In particular, the combination of corneal refractive cataract surgery and premium lenses can provide excellent outcomes that enable many people to be glasses-free the majority of the time.
While all surgeries come with some risk, the success rate for cataract surgery is exceptionally high. Most patients describe the procedure as very comfortable, with minimal to no discomfort. More than 2 million men and women undergo cataract surgery every year, making the procedure one of the most common and most successful medical procedures in the U.S. today.
The cost of basic cataract surgery is generally covered by Medicare, as well as by most private insurance providers. Although Medicare or private insurance covers basic cataract surgery, there may be some costs not covered by your insurance. Examples of out-of-pocket expenses include the selection of a premium lens instead of a standard lens. The experienced team at Eye Medical Clinic can help you maximize your benefits and select an affordable financing plan for any portion of your procedure not covered by Medicare and private insurance.