Is Cataract Surgery Painful? | My iClinic
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Is Cataract Surgery Painful?

Is Cataract Surgery Painful?

Cataract Surgery
My-iClinic
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08/04/2024
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Summary:

Cataract surgery is typically not painful, as it is performed under local anaesthesia, but some patients may experience minor discomfort or pressure during the procedure.

When Is It Time For Cataract Surgery? 

As we age, the natural lens of the eye can become clouded, leading to a condition known as cataracts. While cataracts often develop slowly over time, there comes a point when they begin to significantly impact vision and quality of life. Let’s explore the signs and symptoms that indicate it may be time to consider cataract surgery, and how to prepare for the operation to restore clarity and vision.

Is Cataract Surgery Safe? 

Cataract surgery is considered one of the safest and most successful surgical procedures performed today, with a high success rate and minimal risk of complications. According to the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK, cataract surgery is routinely performed under local anaesthesia and typically takes less than 30 minutes to complete. The procedure involves removing the clouded lens and replacing it with a clear artificial lens, restoring vision and improving the quality of life for millions of patients every year. Complications from cataract surgery are rare, with the NHS reporting that fewer than 1 in 100 patients experience serious side effects. Additionally, advancements in surgical techniques and technology have further enhanced the safety and efficacy of cataract surgery, making it a highly recommended option for those experiencing vision impairment due to cataracts.

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What Happens And Will It Hurt? 

Cataract surgery is typically not painful, as it is performed under local anaesthesia, but some patients may experience minor discomfort or pressure during the procedure. 

During the procedure, a small incision is made in the eye, through which the clouded lens is gently broken up and removed using ultrasound or laser technology. Once the cloudy lens is removed, it is replaced with a clear artificial lens, known as an intraocular lens (IOL), which restores vision and clarity. With advancements in surgical techniques and technology, cataract surgery has become increasingly safe and effective, providing millions of individuals worldwide with improved vision and quality of life. 

Preparing For Cataract Surgery 

Preparing for cataract surgery involves several steps to ensure a smooth and successful procedure. Firstly, it's essential to undergo a comprehensive eye examination by an ophthalmologist to assess the severity of the cataract and determine the most suitable treatment plan. Before the surgery, the ophthalmologist may recommend discontinuing certain medications, such as blood thinners, that could increase the risk of bleeding during the procedure. Additionally, patients may need to undergo pre-operative tests, such as measurements of the eye's shape and size, to determine the appropriate intraocular lens power for implantation. 

On the day of surgery, patients should refrain from eating or drinking anything for several hours before the procedure, as instructed by the surgeon. It's also crucial to arrange for transportation to and from the surgical facility, as well as to have a caregiver available to assist with post-operative care. Following these preparation steps and adhering to any additional instructions provided by the ophthalmologist will help ensure a successful outcome and smooth recovery from cataract surgery.

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8 Tips To Help With Anxiety Before Cataract Surgery

Combating anxiety before surgery is crucial for promoting a positive surgical experience. Here are some strategies to help alleviate anxiety from the My-iClinic team:

1. Educate yourself about the procedure by asking your surgeon questions and seeking information from reputable sources. Understanding what to expect can help alleviate fear of the unknown.

2. Practice deep breathing exercises, meditation, or progressive muscle relaxation to calm your mind and body. These techniques can help reduce stress and promote a sense of calmness.

3. Engage in activities that distract you from worrying about the surgery. This could include reading, listening to music, watching a movie, or spending time with loved ones.

4. Talk to friends, family members, or a therapist about your feelings and concerns. Having a support system can provide emotional reassurance and help you feel less isolated.

5. Imagine yourself successfully getting through the surgery and envisioning a positive recovery. Visualising a favourable outcome can help shift your focus away from anxiety.

6. Engage in light physical activity such as walking or gentle stretching to help release tension and promote relaxation.

7. Adhere to any pre-operative instructions provided by your surgeon, such as fasting guidelines or medication adjustments. Following these instructions can help ensure a smooth surgical experience.

8. If anxiety persists despite trying coping strategies, speak to your doctor about the possibility of using medication to manage anxiety before the surgery.

Remember that it's normal to feel anxious before surgery, but implementing these strategies can help you cope with anxiety and feel more prepared for the procedure.

When Is It Best To Go Private? 

Opting for private cataract surgery may be advantageous for individuals seeking shorter wait times. The ability to choose an established eye clinic with access to advanced technology and premium intraocular lenses can offer the best treatment. My-iClinic offers personalised care, enhanced amenities, and greater flexibility in scheduling appointments and surgeries, providing a tailored and expedited surgical experience. Make My-iClinic your preferred option and enjoy a high-quality treatment that will change your life.

Find out more by Speaking to our team

0208 445 8877