Cataract Removal

During cataract surgery, which is usually performed under local or topical anesthesia as an outpatient procedure, the cloudy lens is removed from the eye.  In most cases, the focusing power of the natural lens is restored by replacing it with a permanent intraocular lens implant.  Dr. Benefield will discuss all of the intraocular lens options with you.  Eye drops will be prescribed post op with several appointments scheduled to assure proper healing.
OPTIONS FOR CATARACT SURGERY

Regain the vision you had in your 20’s – or better ! If cataracts are affecting your quality of life, now is the time to talk with Dr. Benefield about your treatment options.

Dr. Benefield and his staff continue to stay up to date on the latest advancements in cataract surgery. If it is determined that you are a candidate for cataract surgery, or are in the early stages of cataract development, you should be aware of some exciting changes and advancements in the procedure. In May of 2005, the Center for Medicare Services changed their guidelines. They now allow patients with Medicare to opt for advanced technology intraocular lens implants (IOL’s).  Please think seriously about freedom from glasses following cataract surgery. The artificial lens you choose will determine your vision for the rest of your life, so consider your options carefully.

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WHAT IS A CATARACT?

Cataracts are a result of the natural lens inside the eye becoming cloudy, brown, or yellow. as a result, light is scattered by the lens before it can focus on the retina, so vision becomes blurry or dark, and colors become muted.  Signs of cataracts may be difficulty driving, difficulty seeing at night, difficulty viewing a computer screen, colors appear dim and faded,  and frequent change in glasses prescription.  How quickly they develop varies and may even be different between the two eyes.  Most age-related cataracts progress gradually over a period of years.

WHAT CAUSES CATARACT?

The most common type of cataract is related to aging of the eye.  Other causes of cataract include:
– family history
– medical problems, such as diabetes
– injury to the eye
– medications, especially steroids
– radiation
– long-term, unprotected exposure to sunlight
-previous eye surgery
– unknown factors

HOW IS CATARACT TREATED?

Surgery is the only way a cataract can be removed.  However, if symptoms of cataract are not bothering you very much, surgery may not be needed. Sometimes a simple change in your eyeglass prescription may be helpful.  No medications, dietary supplements or exercises have been shown to prevent or cure cataracts.  Protection from excessive sunlight may help slow the progression of cataracts. Sunglasses that screen out ultraviolet (UV) rays or eyeglasses with a clear, anti-UV coating offer this protection.

DETECTION

Dr. Benefield can detect the presence of a cataract by performing a thorough eye examination. He will be able to tell you how much visual improvement is likely based on your individual situation. Surgery should be considered when cataracts cause enough loss of vision to interfere with your daily activities.

More than 1.8 million people have cataract surgery each year in the U.S., and more than 95% of those surgeries are performed with no complications.

During cataract surgery, which is usually performed under local or topical anesthesia as an outpatient procedure, the cloudy lens is removed from the eye.  In most cases, the focusing power of the natural lens is restored by replacing it with a permanent intraocular lens implant.  Dr. Benefield will discuss all of the intraocular lens options with you.  Eye drops will be prescribed post op with several appointments scheduled to assure proper healing.

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Standard Cataract Surgery
This surgery is designed to restore or improve your best-corrected vision (vision with glasses). After surgery, you will need glasses for distance vision, intermediate vision, near vision, or a combination of these. The surgery is covered in full by your insurance, except for any deductible, co-pay, or co-insurance you may have.

Advanced Technology Lens Surgery
This cataract surgery is designed to reduce or eliminate your need for glasses for all ranges of vision, including; distance vision, intermediate vision, and near vision. Dr. Levine will utilize the latest multifocal or accommodating lenses in order to give you a full range of vision with little or no need for glasses. Dr. Levine will also address astigmatism at the time of surgery. Although your insurance will cover the procedure and necessary testing, it does not cover the cost of the lens.

Why is this important?
Please take the time to think about the hobbies and tasks you perform. Would you prefer to do these tasks without the need, or a reduced need for glasses? We will first determine whether or not you clinically qualify for a TECNIS®, ReSTOR®, or Toric®, Multifocal Lens or an accommodating Crystalens® intraocular lens. If Dr. Benefield concludes that you qualify for an Advanced Technology Lens, consider your options and choose wisely – the IOL you select will change the very way you see the world!