Enhanced Vision that Suits Your Lifestyle with Cataract Surgery

At Fraser Valley Cataract & Laser, we see patients with cataracts every day. We know what can cause cataracts, the effects of cataracts and how to safely remove them. However, even though we have extensive expertise with cataract treatment, we know that from a patient standpoint, it can be bothersome, inconvenient and even scary to lose vision because of cataracts.

general.jpgOur eye doctors are committed to offering effective treatment options and delivering great patient care. We believe in educating patients so they can make informed decisions about their treatment. Our patients are treated with respect, compassion, and patience throughout the entire experience.

If you are progressively losing your vision due to cataracts, and it is becoming increasingly harder to perform everyday tasks — such as driving or reading the label on a bottle of medicine — we invite you to schedule a consultation with our eye doctors. We can explain why your vision is worsening and what we can do about it.

Life after Cataract Surgery

Cataract surgery is designed to give you clearer and more colorful vision (sort of like the vision you enjoyed in your youth). Driving and reading become easier. High-definition vision makes the details of your surroundings stand out. Your dependence on corrective glasses may change — perhaps you only need glasses for distance vision, or not at all.

For many people, improved vision correlates with better self-confidence, improved mental health, more independence and a reduction in falls. Hobbies, activities and social outings become more enjoyable. Overall quality of life increases.

There is no age limit for cataract surgery. Anyone with cataracts can enjoy the treatment benefits, regardless of their age.

How Do I Know if I Have Cataracts?

FVCL-30.jpgCataracts are diagnosed after an eye exam with one of our doctors or an optometrist. You may have cataracts if you:

  • Are over the age of 60
  • Notice your vision is progressively worsening
  • Have cloudy or blurry vision
  • Need frequent prescription changes in your eyeglasses or contact lenses
  • See glare around headlights, lamps or sunlight
  • Have poor night vision
  • Have double vision or multiple images
  • Notice that colors seem faded or “washed out”

How Cataract Surgery Works

FVCL-107.jpgIf your cataracts progress to the point where they interfere with your vision and make it difficult to perform everyday tasks, surgical treatment is the best choice. If left untreated, poor vision may lead to motor vehicle accidents, falls and other accidents to the patient or others.

Cataract surgery involves removing the clouded, cataract-diseased lens and replacing it with an artificial lens implant (an IOL). The most common surgery performed in the world, cataract surgery is extremely safe and effective. Complications are rare.

There are different lenses to suit different lifestyles. Some lenses are designed to work best for near vision; others for distance vision. Special lenses have the ability to adjust for both near and distance vision. Other lenses, such as the AcrySof® IQ Toric IOL, are intended to correct astigmatism. So, for example, if you spend a lot of time reading or sewing, you may opt for a different lens than someone who spends a lot of time driving or playing sports. Our eye doctors and team will help you select the best solution for your needs.

What to Expect

FVCL-96.jpgPrior to cataract surgery, several tests will be performed to determine the most suitable type of intraocular lens for your lifestyle. We specialize in many types of new high technology lenses that allows for clear vision for distance, near, or both, even without glasses or contact lenses.

Once your surgery date has been scheduled, you will receive a comprehensive packet of instructions and a prescription for medicated eye drops. We recommend starting the eye drops two days before your cataract surgery.

On the day of surgery, you will need to arrange for someone to drive you to and from surgery. Please plan on being here for approximately 3 hours.  You will be awake during surgery, but you will not be able to see the surgery being performed. If you are nervous, there is a medication you can take under your tongue prior to the surgery to relax you. The procedure takes 8 - 15 minutes and goes by very quickly. It is not painful but there is a sensation of pressure and water. After surgery, we will place a clear plastic protective patch over your eye. Both eyes are generally done on separate days.

Recovering from Surgery and Adjusting to Your Lenses

cataract surgeryAs your eye recovers from surgery, it is normal to have light sensitivity, slight blurriness, tearing and a gritty / irritation feeling in the eye. These side effects take 1 - 2 weeks to subside. There is usually a slight period of adjustment to the artificial lenses, but it is relatively short. The vision may continue to adjust over several weeks to months.

Wear your protective eye shield at night for a week after surgery. During the day, you can wear sunglasses or your normal glasses to protect the treated eye. Use the eye drops as per the schedule we provide until we advise otherwise. Avoid getting the eyes wet, being in a dirty environment, or heavy lifting for the first 2 weeks.

We will provide follow up appointments in the ensuing several weeks to make sure there is proper healing.

One in 10 patients develops scar tissue behind their IOL, which causes blurry vision. This is easily treated with a procedure called a YAG capsulotomy, in which a laser is used to break up scar tissue that forms after surgery. The YAG capsulotomy is painless and takes only a few minutes.

Schedule a Consultation with Our Team

To learn more about cataract surgery and the artificial lens options we offer, please schedule a consultation with our team. Contact Fraser Valley Cataract & Laser at 604-372-(EYES) 3937 today.

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