Can You Have Cataract Surgery in One Eye Only?
Is it possible to have cataract surgery in one eye only? Yes; cataracts are a normal aspect of aging, and can occur in one or both eyes. They do not “spread” to the other eye, meaning they are not a contagious illness. However, a person with a cataract in one eye does usually develop a cataract in the other eye.
Cataracts cannot be prevented. They are an inevitable part of aging that begin to affect adults over 40. By age 75, nearly half of all people will have developed cataracts. However, there are some things you can do to protect yourself from cataracts or slow the progression. First, wear sunglasses to reduce UV exposure to your eyes. If you smoke, quit. Nutrition is key, and it is important to intake antioxidants from leafy greens and other vegetables and fruits. You should also take eye nutritional supplements that contain important eye nutrients like vitamins E and C, zinc and lutein and zeaxanthin; research suggests that low levels of antioxidants like vitamins C and E are associated with cataract formation.
Cataracts form from a natural breakdown of proteins in the eye. As the proteins break down due to exposure to UV radiation and other factors, they begin to clump on the eye’s natural lens. Over time, the proteins block light from entering the pupil, thus altering vision. Many of our patients describe their vision as if they’re looking through a waterfall.
The only remedy to fix a cataract is surgery. Fortunately for you, Elmquist Eye Group surgeons are experts in bladeless laser cataract surgery. Artificial intraocular lenses (IOL) have been around for about 50 years. During the bladeless technique, our surgeons remove the clouded lens and replace it with an IOL. In the last few years, this field has been revolutionized – first with the invention of the bladeless laser technique and then with a selection of the type of lens implants a patient can get.
The bladeless technique has superior precision and accuracy, making cataract surgery one of the safest and most effective surgical procedures in medicine today. Our Elmquist surgeons use the FDA-approved LenSx system designed by Alcon. It uses femtosecond laser technology for cataract procedures. Another reason the LenSx system is superior is that previous manual steps are now automated for the surgeon. We use the femtosecond laser to make a circular incision and then to fragment or break up the cataract prior to removal. The procedure is revolutionary and our board-certified and fellowship-trained surgeons have years of experience performing it.
Many Lenses to Choose From
These days, we can offer patients several varieties of IOL to correct vision, including toric lenses made particularly to correct astigmatism, an elongated curvature of the cornea. In fact, the laser procedure works best for astigmatism, given that the laser does a much more precise job of correcting the eye shape irregularities characteristic of astigmatism. In many cases, standard cataract surgery cannot address astigmatism, particularly as the level of astigmatism gets more severe.
Traditional cataract surgery is tried-and-true and certainly provides excellent results. However, bladeless cataract surgery is revolutionary; it enhances our surgeons’ ability to offer a wider range of corrective surgeries and offer patients at Elmquist Eye Group the best visual outcomes possible.
At Elmquist, our expert team has one goal: to provide you with the best possible cataract care and lens implant for your vision needs. We perform a comprehensive eye exam and health history to determine whether you are a cataract surgery candidate and to also determine the best lens implant for your long-term vision needs.
You can have cataract surgery in one eye only and then do your other eye later. There’s no doubt you’ll have a pleasant surgical experience when you come to Elmquist Eye Group for bladeless laser cataract surgery. We have been providing excellent eye care for nearly 25 years in southwest Florida at our Fort Myers and Cape Coral locations. Give us a call today to schedule your first appointment. You’re in good hands with the Elmquist team!