What is a Cataract?
A cataract is a clouding of an eyes natural crystalline lens. As a cataract becomes ripened it yellows in color making it hard to see through and dulls colors. Night driving can be come difficult and dangerous. Many people describe the cataract sensation as looking through wax paper.
Cataract surgery has existed in this world for over a century, but it is the recent innovations in technology that have transformed this into a very safe and effective surgery. As a patient, it’s great to know that the success rate for cataract surgery is high when you are about to undergo this type of surgery. Cataract surgery is actually the most reimbursed medical surgery by Medicare today! Advanced artificial intraocular lenses inserted during phacoemulsifaction have allowed cataract patients to recover more youthful eyesight. Instead of dealing with glasses after surgery some patients may have the choice to upgrade to a new premium type of lens that will enable vision at multiple distances. In addition to the new lens implants available, less invasive surgery techniques have come to fruition to enable much faster healing. Despite the effectiveness of the cataract surgery the preparation process may take weeks and various decisions will need to be made.
NOTE: Charles Kelman, MD had created the modern style of cataract surgery we use today known as phacoemulsification in 1967.
Cataract Surgery Choices
Once you have decided to have cataract surgery you will have a number of important decisions to make. The first item on the agenda is to select a skilled cataract surgeon. If you are seeking a cataract surgeon in Hawaii, our eye doctors at would be more than happy to be your cataract surgeons of choice. We have the most up to date and modern surgery techniques available to our patients and skilled cataract surgeons to help ensure a safe procedure. Once you have selected a cataract surgeon it is time to understand what lens implant option will be the best. It’s important to discuss your options with a qualified ophthalmologist. Your options will include monofocal lenses, multifocal IOL’s or accommodating lens implants.
The Cataract Surgery Process
After the proper anesthesia and numbing of the eye your cataract surgeon will create a small incision in your eye about 3mm wide. Modern day cataract surgery is also called micro-surgery because the incision sizes have become so small. Once the incision is made the cataract surgeon will insert a probe to break up the cloudy cataract and then remove the material. A suction tube will remove all of the loose debris and the capsular bag is prepared for the artificial IOL implant. The foldable IOL is then inserted through a tube and then unfolds once in place. Intraocular lenses will have haptics and “lens arms” to hold it in place. With the cataract removed and the IOL in place, light can once again travel unimpeded to the back of the eye and focus on the retina where the image is interpreted and transmitted to the brain. The end result is clear youthful vision.
Determining Your Cataract Lens Implant
An important part of your pre-operative process will involve choosing a lens implant. Implants are divided into 2 main categories:
- Multifocal/Premium Lens Implants
How do Monofocal and Multifocal Lenses Work?
Monofocal lens implants work when light enters the actual lens and it is bent to a specific focal point. As the power of the monofocal lens becomes stronger, its ability to bend light more sharply is increased. Because the lens is monofocal, the light can only be bent to one focus point at a time. The light from these lenses is bent to focus specifically on the retina of the eye. New lens implants are now available that can correct vision at near, intermediate and far distances. These types of lenses are commonly called “lifestyle lens implants” or premium lens implants and fall into the categories listed below. Multifocal, toric, and accommodating lens implants are all considered premium lens implants
How do Premium Lens Implants Work?
As we perform daily activities such as reading, watching television or working at the computer, our eyes are constantly focusing on objects at varying distances – up close, far away and everything in-between. The ability to quickly change focus throughout this range of vision is called accommodation. Unfortunately, this ability diminishes, as we grow older, causing us to become dependent on bifocals or reading glasses. However, premium lenses are designed to provide quality vision for near, intermediate and far distances by combining the strengths of apodized diffractive and refractive technologies. Similar technology has been used for years in microscopes and telescopes to improve image quality. Read more about our Premium Lens Implant Options.