When you have cataracts, it can be hard to carry out even the simplest of daily activities. The only way to successfully treat the condition is through surgery. The question many patients have, though, is how much will cataract surgery improve my vision? Here, you’ll discover the type of results you can expect when you undergo cataract surgery.
What is cataract surgery?
Cataract surgery aims to remove the cloudy lens, replacing it with a synthetic one. The procedure takes around 10-20 minutes to complete, and you’ll need to stay and rest for up to two hours afterward.
The eye is numbed before the surgery begins. After the cloudy lens has been replaced, a bandage will be placed over the eye.
How long will it take to see an improvement?
Most patients will see a return to clear vision after the surgery. How long it takes for the vision to clear, however, can vary. Many patients will report seeing clearly after just a few hours. For some, though, it can take up to two weeks to notice a full improvement.
You will typically attend a follow-up appointment a week after the procedure to ensure it is healing properly. If you are experiencing any side effects, it is important to mention this to the surgeon during your follow-up routine.
Could I still have blurry vision after cataract surgery?
While cataract surgery restores the vision in most patients, occasionally the vision may remain blurry. If you have undergone the procedure and you are experiencing blurry vision, it could be down to posterior capsule opacification (PCO).
PCO is otherwise referred to as a secondary cataract. It develops due to epithelial cells obstructing the capsule which holds the intraocular lens (IOL) in place. This causes blurry vision.
If you develop PCO, it can be treated with YAG laser capsulotomy. This will usually be performed three months after the initial procedure.
The importance of cataract surgery aftercare
One thing that can impact how quickly your eyesight clears up after surgery is aftercare. Your surgeon will give you strict post-surgery instructions you should follow. These are designed to speed up the healing process, giving you the most comfortable recovery.
It’s important to avoid rubbing your eyes, and you’ll also need to avoid getting them wet. If you are venturing outdoors, you may wear dark, protective glasses if the bright light is uncomfortable.
It’s common to feel some side effects after the surgery. The eyes may have a gritty, sensitive feeling, and you may experience blurry or double vision for a few days. Ideally, you’ll avoid strenuous activity for a few days. This gives the body plenty of time to rest and recover.
Cataract surgery is a very successful procedure to help patients regain their vision. Provided you follow the aftercare instructions provided, you should see a return to your vision within two weeks of the procedure.