What happens during cataract surgery?

  • Topical eye drops are administered to numb the eye and dilate the pupil, and medications are given to help you relax.

  • An IV will be started by a nurse to administer intravenous medications.

  • You may feel slight pressure during the procedure.

  • The procedure is performed with small instruments under the high magnification of a microscope.

  • Ultrasound energy fragments the cataract into small pieces that are easily removed through the small incision.

  • The surgeon replaces the clouded lens with an artificial lens implant that restores some of the eye’s ability to focus.

  • After the procedure, eye drops will be administered to control inflammation and prevent infection.

  • The tiny opening heals naturally and with very little recovery time.

Watch the video below to learn about cataract surgery:

When can I resume normal activity?
Most patients are able to drive and return to work after only two to three days. The eye may still be sensitive to touch and to light, and sunglasses are recommended for outdoor activity. Your doctor will advise you as to when you can resume the use of eye makeup and answer your questions as to other activities you should avoid while the eye is healing.

Watch the video below that provide an idea about what to possibly expect following cataract surgery:

Where is cataract surgery performed? Great news! Cataract surgery does not have to involve a hospital stay. That is because our surgeons perform the procedure at Oregon Trail Eye Surgery Center. Yes, cataract surgery is an outpatient procedure that generally takes less than 15 minutes, with minimal discomfort.

Trattler WB, et al. The prospective health assessment of cataract patients’ ocular surface (PHACO) study: the effect of dry eye. Clin Ophthalmol. 2017; 11: 1423–1430. doi:10.2147/OPTH.S120159

Dry Eye and Cataract Surgery

Dry eye is common before cataract surgery.  In a 2017 study, researchers found signs of dry eye in more than half of the patients they studied when using specific dry eye tests. [1] At the time of the study, only 22% of the patients had an official dry eye diagnosis. This means that dry eye in the cataract-age population is often underreported.
More eye doctors are treating dry eye before surgery to ensure better vision results after surgery. Some people with dry eye have irritating symptoms that affect their vision. Other people do not even know they have it. In both cases, treating dry eye before cataract surgery can help improve your surgical results. Follow treatments recommended by your eye doctor, and ask for help if you have dry eye symptoms that continue after cataract surgery.  Think you may have dry eye? Contact our office today to schedule an evaluation and begin the first steps towards dry eye relief. 
Visit our Dry Eye Clinic page to learn even more.