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What is a Cataract?
Though many people have heard of cataracts, not everyone knows exactly what they are. Contrary to popular belief, they are not a film growing over your eye. A cataract actually occurs when the natural lens in your eye becomes cloudy, making it harder for light to enter your eye. This can cause obscured or blurred vision, similar to looking out a foggy window.
If you’ve been diagnosed with cataracts, you’re not alone — they're a natural part of the aging process, and they affect more than 20.5 million Americans over 40.
What are Cataract Symptoms?
Cataracts often develop slowly. In fact, most people learn they have cataracts after a routine eye exam. This is usually followed by a visit to an ophthalmologist.
Regular visits to your eye care specialist are important for catching cataracts before they cause problematic changes in your vision. You can also watch out for cataract symptoms like:
Cloudy, blurry or dim vision
Increasing difficulty with night vision
Sensitivity to light and glare
Seeing rings or halos around lights
Frequent changes in eyeglass or contact lens prescription
Fading or yellowing of colors
Double vision in a single eye
Are you a Candidate for Cataract Surgery?
Unfortunately, cataracts aren’t preventable, but with more than 3 million cataract surgeries taking place in the U.S. every year, it’s one of the most commonly performed surgeries. Your eye surgeon will help you weigh your options, including your advanced technology options.
Lens Replacement Surgery
Cataract surgery is the only way to correct cataracts. The procedure involves the removal of the natural lens in your eye, which the cataract has made cloudy. Your lens is then replaced by a new one, known as an intraocular lens (IOL). It’s an outpatient procedure. The whole process usually lasts less than 30 minutes. The time to consider lens replacement surgery is when you are no longer satisfied with your vision or the quality of your vision begins to put limits on your lifestyle. With advancements in technology, you now have choices of what type of lens will be used for your lens replacement surgery.
LENSX | LASER CATARACT SURGERY
Removal of cataracts is crucial to prevent severe loss of vision and the debilitating effects that this common condition can cause. Recent innovations in cataract surgery now make it possible for cataracts to be removed with greater precision and accuracy. Dr. Derose is one of the few surgeons in the Lehigh Valley that offer cataract surgery treatment with the LenSx® femtosecond laser.
Traditional cataract surgery involves the use of a surgical blade to perform corneal incisions and anterior capsulotomies of the eye, ultimately making it possible to remove the cataract. The LenSx® femtosecond laser is designed to improve precision and reproducibility during certain challenging and critical steps of cataract surgery that are currently performed manually. Because this technology allows for laser precision during these steps, the LenSx laser may contribute to improved surgical outcomes.
The LenSx® femtosecond laser utilizes a beam of laser light to create the necessary incisions for cataract surgery. An advanced computer-guidance system, controlled by one of our experienced cataract surgeons, directs the laser over the eye to provide the most precise and accurate results for each individual patient. This makes it possible for the successful combination of the surgeon’s skills with state-of-the-art technology to produce extraordinary results. The LenSx® femtosecond laser may also be able to better manage astigmatism than other types of cataract surgery.
After the LenSx® femtosecond laser procedure is complete and the cataract has been removed, Dr. Derose can place a refractive lens implant inside the eye to improve your vision.
Removal of cataracts is only the first step in setting you on the road to better vision. Refractive cataract surgery removes the cataracts, and then replaces your natural lens with an intraocular lens (IOL) implant, capable of reducing your dependence on corrective eyewear such as glasses or contacts. Dr. Derose can talk with you about your lens replacement options at your initial cataract surgery consultation.
It is important to remember that all surgical procedures involve some degree of risk. Dr. Derose will talk with you about potential risks and complications at your initial consultation and answer all of your questions. Dr. Derose is highly experienced and will take every precaution to minimize risks and provide you with the safest procedure possible.
Please contact our office to schedule a consultation for cataract surgery or other treatments with the LenSx® femtosecond laser. We look forward to talking with you about this innovative new procedure.
Laser Cataract Technology
Traditional cataract surgery is considered to be one of the most accurate and successful procedures performed in medicine today. Now, a technological breakthrough with laser cataract surgery is available that has significantly improved the precision of several of the most critical steps in cataract surgery.
With laser cataract surgery, Dr. Derose is able to customize your procedure to your eye’s unique characteristics, resulting in a better visual refractive outcome.
In addition to using the femtosecond laser to accomplish many of the surgical steps that were traditionally performed by hand, Dr.Derose uses the best and latest innovations in cataract surgery, such as sutureless small incisions through the clear cornea and foldable intraocular lenses. The precise, reproducible steps performed by the laser means better lens positioning, less trauma to the eye and more predictable visual results which are especially important with advanced technology lenses.
Advancements in Lens Replacement Surgery Intraocular Lenses (IOL) for Cataract or Refractive Lens Exchange
Today’s lens replacement patient demands excellent vision after surgery. Previous lens replacement surgery technologies provided only one focal point: distance, leaving people dependent upon reading glasses or bifocals. Recent advancements in multifocal technology now make it possible for you to read the words on prescription bottles, magazines, newspapers and computer screens without magnifying glasses or bifocals (even trifocals), while still clearly seeing objects at a distance.
These lenses have the ability to consistently offer improved vision at various ranges – near through distance. Your doctor can discuss with you which lens will best address your visual demands and lifestyle. These lenses are not for everyone and some additional testing will need to be done to determine if you are a great candidate for these IOLs. The majority of patients who have chosen advanced IOLs are very happy with the results and would recommend the procedure to their friends and family who have cataracts.
The choice of lens is an investment that can help you maintain your standard of living and enjoy good vision during every waking moment for the rest of your life.