A detailed overview on cataracts surgery

A detailed overview on cataracts surgery

Cataracts develop when the eye’s lens becomes partially or completely cloudy. The three main causes of cataracts are aging, inflammation, and steroid use.

What primary signs and symptoms can cataracts development bring on?

When the lens is cloudy, you might notice that bright lights glare more and that your vision is blurrier. Additionally, you might notice that your optometrist warned you that your eyeglass prescription might vary more than usual.

The best way to treat cataracts.

The most common form of treatment for cataracts is straightforward cataracts surgery, which is frequently carried out as a day-case procedure under local anesthesia.

What is involved in cataracts surgery?

The natural lens in your eye will be removed during cataracts surgery, and a custom-made artificial lens will be inserted in its place.

Cataract surgery is a common, simple surgical procedure that usually takes 30 to 45 minutes to complete. The same day as their cataracts surgery, patients may return home.

When this is required, there is often 6-12 weeks interval between the two operations.

What occurs prior to having cataracts surgery?

Prior to having cataracts surgery, the patient must be sent to a qualified ophthalmologist for an eye examination to measure their eyes (biometry). Patients may need ultrasound scans to confirm certain eye measurements and getting an OCT scan to check the retina’s health before surgery is also typical.

What advantages does cataracts surgery have?

The primary advantages of having cataracts surgery include the following:

  • increasing color saturation
  • decreasing glare
  • enhancing eyesight
  • decreasing need on glasses.

What dangers come with having cataracts surgery?

The following are the primary dangers of cataracts surgery:

  • There is a 1 in 1000 chance that an infection or retinal detachment may cause irreversible vision loss.
  • A one in one hundred chance of needing many procedures but eventually having satisfactory visual results.
  • A 10% chance of needing a YAG capsulotomy, a simple and short treatment, to “polish” the lens 6–12 months after the operation.

Which kind of lenses are inserted?

Monofocal lenses are the norm. Patients are therefore left with clear eyesight at a certain distance. Typically, patients ask for distant vision without glasses or with only a mild prescription. Reading a book or using a phone will necessitate reading glasses for them.

Patients who are myopic (short-sighted) may want to be left short-sighted. This implies that following surgery, they will be able to read without glasses but will still need them to see far away.

A toric lens, which lessens astigmatism and simplifies glasses prescriptions, may be helpful for patients with substantial astigmatism. You may talk about this during your consultation.

Extracapsular Cataract Extraction (ECCE)

The natural lens of the eye is removed during extracapsular cataracts extraction, but the rear of the capsule that holds the lens in place is left untouched. The incision is far less invasive than the intracapsular operation (which removed the lens and whole capsule), but it is still longer than the later-developed phacoemulsification. (6) The ECCE method entails making a tiny incision close to the exterior border of the cornea and then entering the eye via this aperture. 

Then, a tiny circular rip, or “capsulorrhexis,” is used to delicately open the front of the lens capsule, which retains the lens in place. The lens’s hard nucleus is then carefully retrieved using specialized instruments and pressure. The surgeon next removes the cortex of the soft lens using suction. The empty lens capsule is filled with viscoelastic material to keep it in shape while the intraocular lens is being implanted; this substance is then withdrawn after the IOL has been properly put. 

The undamaged rear of the lens capsule helps to securely maintain the freshly implanted intraocular lens since it is still within the eye. Two to three stitches are then used to secure and guard the wound. Although extracapsular cataracts extraction is less often utilized than phacoemulsification nowadays, it is nevertheless beneficial for removing severely advanced cataracts that are difficult to remove with phaco or in individuals with several eye conditions that might be made worse by phaco. Because the cataracts is removed in one piece with ECCE, the visual recovery is often slower than via phaco, and the incision is bigger, which may be more uncomfortable. 


An improvement on extracapsular cataracts extraction is phacoemulsification. Charles Kelman first developed the method in the 1960s. It was found that a cataracts might be broken up before removal using an ultrasonic tip (instead of removing it in one singular piece). Although learning phacoemulsification might be challenging for medical professionals, surgeons have increasingly mastered the procedure thanks to its astounding success rates. 

Phacoemulsification has been improved and developed by surgeons throughout time, making it even lower risk and more efficient. Technology advancements like the foldable IOL, for instance, have improved results by enabling surgeons to make smaller incisions. (9) The surgeon anesthetizes the area around the eye before completing the procedure. 

An incision is made on the side of the cornea after pressure is applied to stop any bleeding. The temporal region has been shown to be the least invasive spot to make the incision in recent years. To lessen shock in the intraocular matter, viscoelastic fluid is introduced via the surgical site. A small, circular incision is created in the tissue around the cataracts to execute capsulorhexis. A water stream is used to remove the cataracts from the cortex, then an ultrasound-infused sharp needle is inserted into the cornea. The cataracts is emulsified by this and suctioned out (starting with the central nucleus because this is the densest part). A small hole at the tip of the phaco probe is used to extract the cataracts as it is being emulsified. The posterior capsule is kept in place to stabilize the intraocular lens after it has been inserted while the cortex is removed.

The incision is much smaller in this procedure because the IOL can be folded before being inserted. Depending on the size and density of the cataracts that has to be removed, the precise surgical techniques may vary. There are several emulsification strategies, and the surgeon might focus on various regions of the nucleus at various periods. The cataracts may either be surgically removed in portions or continuously sliced. Because of ongoing technological advancements, smaller incisions are becoming necessary. (10) Cataract Surgery with a Small Incision (SICS)

Although phacoemulsification is by far the most often performed operation in the industrialized world, non-phaco minor incision surgery is frequently performed by ophthalmologists in impoverished nations and, when performed properly, is just as successful. There are three crucial components to this “sutureless non-phaco cataracts surgery.” Low danger of astigmatism development is provided by the procedure’s tiny, self-sealing incision. To remove the lens nucleus, the incision must be large enough to accommodate the complete structure. In order to avoid damaging the cornea and posterior lens capsule, the nucleus must first be prepped within the eye for extraction. Manual SICS compared to phaco has a number of benefits since it uses less resources, may be used to treat almost any kind of cataracts, and needs less training. 

Artists eye diseases

It is fascinating to look at the changes that eye disorders bring about in how individuals see the world in order to better comprehend the impact of these conditions. Famous painters Degas and Monet’s final works have been criticized for being “strangely harsh and gaudy” and completely inconsistent with their customary artistic personas. Their artworks provide us insight into the manner in which eye disorders may significantly distort and obstruct vision since these modifications resulted from eye ailments. Images of a “near acuity test card” were altered in a research by Michael Marmor to simulate the impact of the artists’ eye ailments. Photographs of items the artists observed and painted in real life were altered using techniques including “Gaussian blur, brunescence, darkening, blur, and filter settings.”

More to read: Can I exercise after cataracts surgery?