Will I Need Glasses After Cataract Surgery?
Dr. Kenneth Lipstock performs a variety of cataract surgery procedures to help cataract surgery patients solve the vision problems of nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, and presbyopia (the need for reading glasses).
When an eye is nearsighted, the cornea and lens are too strong for the length of the eye, so light comes to a focus before it hits the retina. Because of this, images are blurred.
In farsighted eyes, the cornea and lens are not strong enough for the length of the eye, so light comes to a focus behind the retina, so images are blurred.
When an eye is astigmatic, the cornea is oval instead of spherical creating two focal points and thus blurred vision.
Dr. Lipstock’s procedures can help reduce or eliminate eyeglasses after cataract surgery. Learn more about different treatments to correct astigmatism and presbyopia during cataract surgery below.
Correcting Astigmatism With Cataract Surgery
1. LIMBAL RELAXING INCISIONS (LRIS) FOR ASTIGMATISM
Since the incisions are outside of the field of view, they do not cause glare and other visual effects that result from other corneal surgeries like Radial Keratotomy.
LRIs are often used to correct mild amounts of astigmatism as part of cataract surgery. Although LRIs are not as accurate as laser vision correction (LASIK or PRK), they are simpler, less expensive, and are conveniently done at the time of cataract surgery.
LRIs are performed by the surgeon at the start of cataract surgery using an operating microscope. Topical (numbing drop) Anesthesia is used to numb the eye. Any residual astigmatism can usually be successfully reduced by LASIK or PRK.
2. TORIC IOL FOR ASTIGMATISM
Correcting Presbyopia with Cataract Surgery
The focusing muscle in the eye changes the shape of our lens to help us focus on near objects. This ability gradually decreases after age 40. Even if you do not have nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism, near vision becomes increasingly blurry after age 40. This is called Presbyopia.
Blended Vision is an advanced type of monofocal Intraocular Lens procedure where the dominant eye is set for distance vision and the non-dominant eye is set for near focus. The brain easily processes the two images, affording overall vision of excellent clarity.
Benefits of Blended Vision
What are the benefits of blended vision?
- Solves the problems of cataracts and presbyopia (over-the-counter reading glasses may be necessary for very fine print or reading in very dim light)
- Cost is approximately 1/5th the cost of premium Multifocal or Crystalens IOLs
- Excellent vision outcomes
In a trial of Blended Vision performed by Dr. Lipstock and presented as a formal paper at the 2011 American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery annual international meeting, over 99% of patients reported they were happy with the results.
Multifocal IOLs for Presbyopia
With a Multifocal Intraocular Lens, half the light entering each eye is targeted for near vision and the other half for distance vision. Each eye sees with both far and near vision. Intermediate range vision (such as seeing a computer) may be more difficult. Some patients experience severe halos and difficulty driving at night. This is why Dr. Lipstock recommends blended vision instead since it does not induce these types of complications.
Crystalens for Presbyopia
The Crystalens is a Monofocal lens (set for one distance of vision) that moves from the action of the eye’s muscles (accommodation). Near vision may not be as clear with this type of intraocular lens; however, intermediate vision is typically very good. Some patients report severe halos.
Cataract surgery using the implementation of standard Intraocular Lenses will solve the cataract problem; however, this will not correct astigmatism or presbyopia. Therefore, these patients must often wear eyeglasses after cataract surgery. This is why Dr. Lipstock recommends blended vision instead of a crystalens.
For more information about glasses and cataract surgery, watch Dr. Lipstock’s in-depth video to learn about your options for better vision after cataract surgery.