Cataract develops in the natural lens of the eye, causing it to become cloudy. When this occurs, it can lead to significant problems with the eyesight. To correct the problem, cataract surgery removes the cloudy lens, replacing it with an artificial one.
Generally speaking, cataract surgery is a straightforward procedure with relatively low risks. In order to ensure the surgery is effective, there are some things you’ll need to do prior to the procedure. Here, you will discover some of the best ways to prepare for cataract surgery to guarantee the optimal outcome.
Medical conditions and medications
You will need to let Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon Mr Zaid Shalchi know of any pre-existing medical conditions you have and medications you are taking. Most conditions won’t affect your ability to undergo the procedure, but you may need to monitor certain medications beforehand. On the day of the surgery and during recover, take all your usual medication as normal.
You may also need to undergo several tests to ensure you are suitable for the procedure. A complete ocular examination will be carried out which includes checking for existing conditions which may increase the likelihood of an infection, as well as assessing the anatomy of the eye
Prepare to succeed
It’s best to avoid drinking for 24 hours before your surgery. Alcohol can dehydrate the eyes, but also affect certain medications that you’ll be given during or after surgery.
You’ll be advised to shower and wash your hair before you come in for the operation, as you should not get your eye area wet for two weeks afterwards.
Another important piece of cataract surgery preparation advice is to avoid wearing make-up for at least 24 hours before your operation to avoid any irritation of the eyes. After surgery, you will be advised not to wear eye make-up for a few weeks.
Get your house in order
After cataract surgery, you will be advised to rest for at least a few days. However, the full recovery will take anything from two to six weeks. As you won’t be able to carry out normal activities, it will help to get your house in order before the procedure.
Making sure the home is clean, tidy and uncluttered is a good idea. This will allow you to fully relax when you return home. You can also plan meals in advance, so you won’t have to cook.
Consider rearranging your furniture to provide more space to manoeuvre or planning where you may sleep for the first few days especially if you have poor vision in the other eye. The more preparation you do before the surgery, the easier the recovery will be.
Enlist help for after the surgery
As you will be limited in what you can do, it’s also a good idea to enlist help from family and friends. You will definitely need somebody to help drive you home immediately after the surgery. You will need regular eye drops after your operation and it can be helpful for someone else to put these in initially.
Top things to take with you
There are a few things you’ll want to take with you on the day of the procedure. If you feel anxious about the surgery, consider taking music and headphones with you to listen to before and after surgery.
You should also wear comfortable clothing and anything that buttons up at the front or is loose around the neck is a good idea as you want to avoid rubbing the eye area. Bring some sunglasses, as your eyes will be sensitive to the light after surgery.
These are some of the best ways to prepare for cataract surgery. However, Mr Shalchi will be able to give you more comprehensive cataract surgery preparation advice during your consultation and any pre-surgery checks. Going into cataract surgery prepared will help to aid in recovery and ultimately improve results