STANDARD CATARACT SURGERY
Cataracts occur when changes in the lens of the eye cause it to become less transparent. The lens is the crystalline structure that sits just behind your pupil, which is the black circle in the centre of your eye.
When light enters your eye, it passes through the transparent layer of tissue at the front of the eye (the cornea) and the lens, which focuses it on the light-sensitive layer of cells at the back of your eye (the retina).
Cataracts sometimes start to develop in a person’s lens as they get older, stopping some of the light reaching the retina. This can affect your vision, making it become increasingly cloudy, blurry, or misty.
When is cataract surgery recommended?
Slight cloudiness of the lens is a normal part of ageing. Significant cloudiness, or cataracts, usually get slowly worse over time. Surgery to remove them is the only way to restore vision.
However, surgery isn’t necessary if your vision isn’t significantly affected and you don’t have difficulties carrying out everyday tasks.
Cataract surgery is a relatively straightforward procedure that usually takes 30 to 40 minutes.
It is usually carried out as day surgery under local anaesthetic, which means you’ll be awake during the procedure and can go home on the same day.
During the operation, I will make a tiny cut (incision) in your eye to remove the affected lens. After it’s been removed, a small plastic lens called an intraocular implant or intraocular lens will be inserted.
If you have cataracts in both eyes, I will normally operate on each eye a few weeks apart.
This gives the first eye time to heal and time for your vision to return to normal.