A cataract is when the clear lens inside your eye has become cloudy or opaque. The lens is positioned just behind the iris and is responsible for keeping images in focus on the retina. It is adjustable for distance and close work. When a cataract develops, the lens becomes cloudy and prevents the light rays passing onto the retina. The picture that the retina receives becomes dull and fuzzy.
A cataract usually forms slowly with vision gradually blurring over months or years. It develops with the natural ageing of the body. However it may also be as a result of injury, inflammation, certain medications or related to certain conditions such as diabetes.
When a cataract is removed, it is replaced with a permanent artificial lens implant, helping to restore vision.
Before surgery your Consultant will send you for a biometry eye scan to help decide the strength of lens that will be used.
You will be given anesthetic drops to numb the eye. In some cases a small injection of anaesthetic may be given.
The procedure is carried out on a day-case basis. It usually takes about 15-30 minutes and you will be awake throughout.
Your Consultant will remove the cloudy lens by making a tiny opening at the edge of the cornea. The cloudy lens will be removed and replaced with a permanent artificial lens implant, which will allow you to see again.
Following the Procedure
- You will be monitored and your blood pressure and pulse recorded.
- You will have a clear eye shield in place over the operated eye which must be left in place until the following morning.
- You will be taken through your post-operative eye-drops regime and any other instructions. Please make sure you are clear on these before you leave the hospital. Often we find that having a relative or friend to listen and go through your post-operative advice with us is useful.
- You will be given a light snack and will then be ready for discharge.
- You cannot drive and will need someone to accompany you home.
- Before you leave we will give you a time and date for a follow up appointment or let you know when to expect a call from us.