During your comprehensive eye exam at our Fort Lauderdale office the natural lens of your eye is carefully viewed through a dilated pupil to check for any opacities, yellowing or distortions. If a cataract is seen, several additional tests will be recommended in order to assess if the cataract is the source of a decrease in the quality of your vision.
Since cataracts generally do not pose any health threat to the eye, the option of surgery is based on your personal daily vision needs and how the cataract may currently be impacting your life.
The initial tests are done to assess if the cataract is the source of the decreased vision:
- A detailed Refraction is done to make certain that no improvement can be made with a change in your eyeglass prescription.
- Brightness Acuity Test (BAT) or sometimes called Glare Testing is done to determine the effects increased and decreased light may have on the quality of your vision.
- Potential Acuity Test is done to determine if we would expect an improvement in your vision after the cataract is removed.
- Corneal Topography will be done to check for any corneal irregularities that may be contributing to decreased clarity in your vision.
These following tests at our office in Fort Lauderdale are done if cataract surgery is going to be done. They are performed to further evaluate the cataract, the structue and health of your eye and the calculate the power of the intraocular lens implant that will be used.
Treatment – Cataract Surgery
During Cataract surgery, the patient's cloudy natural lens is removed and replaced (implanted) with a synthetic lens, thus providing a clear image to the retina. This implanted lens is commonly referred to as an Intraocular Lens (IOL)
Dr. Richard Kalski performs cataract surgery at a surgical facility specializing in out-patient procedures. He uses a technique called phacoemulsification, which is considered the most advanced and modern cataract removal technique. There are no shots given around the eye; he uses topical, or "eye-drop" anesthesia. Patients choose the level of anesthesia they would like used during the surgery to help put them at ease. Once the cataract is removed, an intraocular lens (IOL) is implanted into the eye to compensate for the removal of the eye's natural lens. Typically, the incision is self-sealing and no stitches are required because the incision is so small. Most patients return to their normal work and lifestyle routine within a day or two. You can expect to see a gradual improvement in visual clarity during the first month after surgery. Patients use anti-inflammatory and antibiotic eye drops immediately after surgery and taper them during the first month after cataract surgery to insure that appropriate healing occurs.
Advanced Technology Implants offered in our Fort Lauderdale office, such as Restor, AcrySof Toric, and Crystalens, use revolutionary new technology to further enhance your post-cataract surgery vision. For most cataract patients, life without reading glasses or bifocals is something they either experienced before presbyopia or they just dreamed about for most of their lives. The Restor and the Crystalens IOLs are designed to reduce the need for reading glasses. For those with astigmatism, the AcrySof Toric IOL is used to deliver a high level of glasses-free vision for cataract patients.
The more you know about cataracts, the better prepared you will be to deal with them – or help prevent them in the first place!