Answers by Mitchell Gossman, MD, an ophthalmologist at Eye Associates of Central Minnesota, located in St. Cloud
In Part 3 of this series, you’ve learned about lens implants that allow you to see both distant and near items without glasses. But what if you still need glasses after cataract surgery, what can be done at that point? Is it too late?
1. Light Adjustable Lens
We’ll discuss this high-tech option first. When cataract surgery is performed, the eye is measured to determine what power of lens implant is needed in order to produce as little prescription needed for your eye to provide clear vision, and most patients choose to have no correction for distance. Most often, however, there is still some correction needed for perfect vision in the distance. The small correction you end up with might be tolerable so that you don’t need glasses, but it might be significant. If you’ve already had cataract surgery with a standard lens, this option is not available, but there is a new technology lens implant that can be used, the Light Adjustable Lens. This lens can be adjusted in power after surgery. Your prescription is measured after cataract surgery, and a device is used to painlessly, and without an incision, deliver light to the lens implant to adjust its power and reduce your need for glasses to near zero. This technology is not covered by insurance, so fees apply.
2. Glasses or contacts
The simplest way to correct vision after cataract surgery is to wear glasses or contacts.
3. Laser vision correction: LASIK or PRK
In most cases, it is possible to use a laser to reduce the need for glasses after cataract surgery. This is LASIK (or a similar operation called PRK), the same procedure that healthy people have to reduce their dependency on contacts and glasses. This is a procedure that is not covered by insurance, and fees apply.
4. Intraocular Lens Exchange
It is possible to remove the existing lens implant and place a new implant with a different power in an effort to reduce the need for glasses. However, this is not guaranteed to be 100% accurate, and is usually reserved for cases where the leftover glasses prescription is very significant. It carries considerable risk, and is not used very often.
So, there are way to end up with very little need for corrective lenses after cataract surgery. If you do plan ahead, it is possible to reduce the possibility of having significant need for glasses after cataract surgery via special advanced technology lens implants.
Find out more
Dr. Mitchell Gossman is a comprehensive ophthalmologist at Eye Associates of Central Minnesota. The office is located at 628 Roosevelt Road, Suite 101, in St. Cloud. To make an appointment or to learn more, call 320-774-3789 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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