Are you thinking about having cataract surgery NY or NJ but don’t know where to begin? The techniques used in modern cataract surgery have improved significantly! Learn more about cataract basics and the options available to you today.
Cataracts are a common eye disorder in which the natural crystalline lens in the eye becomes cloudy and disrupts vision. Several factors may cause cataracts, but most are related to age. The only way to treat them is by surgically removing the clouded cataract lens.
Cataract surgery has been performed for thousands of years in some crude fashion, but modern cataract surgery has come a long way in just the last decade or so. Dr. Ilan Cohen at the 5th Avenue Eye Center has extensive experience performing cataract surgery NY & NJ and utilizes the most current techniques and technology to benefit his patients. With his expertise, your cataract surgery NY or NJ will usually take less than ten minutes!
Modern Cataract Surgery Procedure
Cataract surgery consists of several steps:
- The eye is numbed
- An incision is made
- The cataract is removed
- An intraocular lens is implanted
- The incision is closed
In the past, anesthesia was injected into the eye to numb the area. Modern cataract surgery NY and NJ today uses only topical anesthesia in the form of eye drops. Topical anesthesia has several benefits – primarily the absence of pain. The results from the surgery also appear faster and some may be immediate.
Patients who only have topical anesthesia do not have to wear a patch on their eye following surgery, and they do not have to stop taking blood thinners prior to surgery. At the 5th Avenue Eye Center, cataract surgery NY or NJ is an outpatient procedure, recovery is quick, and patients can usually go home within a few hours.
A Smaller, Safer Incision
Topical anesthesia is sufficient today for cataract surgery because the modern cataract surgery no longer requires a long incision. Surgeons used to have to make an incision in the eye that was at least equal to the size of the crystalline lens and the lens implant. Modern technology (equipment and lenses) has made it possible for the entire cataract surgery to be performed through a micro-incision. The benefits of this smaller incision include less trauma to the eye, faster healing time and no need for stitches to close.
One reason such a small incision is possible is because of a technology called phacoemulsification, or phaco for short. Phaco uses an ultrasonic vibrating needle which is inserted through the micro-incision to liquefy the cataract lens. The cataract can then be suctioned out through the incision. A large incision isn’t necessary because the cataract is not removed in one piece. The incision does not need to be large to accommodate the lens implant either. Modern lens implants are made of flexible material that can be folded up and injected through the small opening. The implantable lens is then unfolded inside the eye and positioned in place.
Modern Advances in Intraocular Lenses
Modern intraocular lenses are also better than the old lenses for improving your vision. In the past, IOLs only improved distance vision. Today, there are several different intraocular lenses designed to offer clear vision over many distances. These lenses perform similar functions but have different operating mechanisms.
Dr. Ilan Cohen has extensive experience implanting all of these lenses and can help you determine which one will best meet your needs.
Is It Safer?
The modern improvements in cataract surgery have definitely improved the safety of the procedure. Cataract surgery NY and NJ is less invasive than it has ever been. Today, patients can expect fewer complications and better overall results. No surgery is completely risk-free, however. Although rare, some complications are possible. The main complication to guard against is infection. Pre- and post-operative antibiotics are generally used to prevent infection from occurring. Other side effects of cataract surgery are usually temporary or easily treated.
Insurance Coverage for Cataract Surgery NY & NJ
With all of the advances in cataract surgery, insurance coverage has been slow to catch up. Most insurance companies will cover the cost of cataract surgery NY and NJ, but most will not pay for premium specialty lenses like ReZoom or Toric IOLs.
At our 5th Avenue Eye Center locations, we can help you work through the insurance claim processes and answer any questions you might have about this procedure. Schedule a consultation with Dr. Ilan Cohen to learn more about how modern cataract surgery can improve your vision!