Cataract surgery is the most commonly performed surgical procedure in the world because the condition affects everyone sooner or later. The latest technological developments are such that the cataract operation is quick and the patient will not feel anything during the procedure.
Dr. Antolín, medical director of Central Ocular, is one of the key players in the field of cataract microsurgery at national level. He has a wealth of experience in the successful treatment of complex cases, he takes part in numerous training programmes for surgeons and he makes frequent technical contributions to the implementation of the most advanced variations of crystalline lens surgery. Furthermore, he is the only current surgeon who routinely performs sub-1mm micro-incision surgery on all kinds of cataract in Spain.
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What are cataracts?
The cataract is the loss of transparency of part of the eye, the crystalline lens. It occurs over time or due to an exposure to various harmful agents. The clouding of the crystalline lens is a process which affects everyone sooner or later. It is a natural process which should not alarm you but which should be corrected in order to improve quality of life..
Diagnosis and Treatment
Initially, cataracts become apparent by a change in grading. Subsequently, vision becomes progressively blurred, and the problem may lead to blindness. Paradoxically, due to changes of grading, cataracts may improve near vision, resulting in a recovery of vision by the patient from this distance. This is usually indicative that a formed cataract is present.
Not all cataracts require an immediate surgical procedure, as the rate of progression may be slow and symptomatology may be temporarily limited. However, it must be taken into consideration that the loss of vision caused by cataracts is progressive. There are two circumstances in which a cataract operation may be necessary:
- When there is visual impairment.
- If there is any defect that we are able to correct by cataract surgery: myopia, astigmatism, hypermetropy, presbyopia, etc.
Secondly, patients may no longer be required to wear glasses if they have cataract surgery.
Frequently asked questions about Cataract Surgery
Precisely what is the cataract?
Over time, the crystalline lens (i.e. the natural lens of the eye) will sustain an opacification process which initially hinders and eventually prevents the passage of light and images within the eye. This process is called Cataract.
Though less frequent, it is also possible for the cataract to occur as a result of a blow; in this case, it is called “traumatic cataract”.
In very few cases, cataracts may affect very young children. These cases are referred to as “congenital cataracts”.
When do cataracts appear?
In most cases, cataracts usually appear from the age of 60. However, in people with a high grading of Myopia or diabetics, they usually develop at an earlier age, from the age of 50.
What are the symptoms of cataracts?
When the cataract begins to form, its symptoms are almost imperceptible as it develops slowly and, moreover, the eye becomes “accustomed” to seeing less. On a gradual basis, the cataract becomes denser (it “matures”) which results in more blurred vision, a worse perception of colours and an increase in dazzling in electric lighting, among other symptoms. The progression of the cataract obviously makes normal vision increasingly difficult and hinders the performance of routine activities such as reading, driving, etc.
How are cataracts removed?
The only treatment is an ocular micro-surgical procedure during which the crystalline lens is diluted by ultrasound (known as phacoemulsification) and subsequently replaced with a new lens.
How does the cataract operation proceed?
The cataract operation is extremely short and barely lasts 10-15 minutes. The procedure is painless; the anaesthetic is applied via drops as the procedures take place at walk-in clinics. Following the procedure, the patient recovers his/her vision and is able to get back into a normal routine in a very short space of time.
Can this operation also treat presbyopia (eye fatigue)?
Yes, provided that the patient opts for multi-focal lenses. In this case, the patient will have excellent and clear vision from any distance which means that he/she will no longer depend on glasses.
Although it is true that most Medical Insurance Companies do not cover the cost of these lenses, it is also the case that the patient does not have to pay a very high amount and the benefits of excellent vision certainly enhance his/her quality of life.
When is it appropriate to undergo cataract surgery?
As the technique presently used involves diluting the crystalline lens by ultrasound, it is our recommendation that the surgery should take place as soon as possible, i.e. when the cataract maturation process has not yet turned it into a harder element.
The belief, which is still widely held, that the procedure should be delayed as much as possible is no longer valid and is counter-productive.
Moreover, why would you wait to restore and enjoy proper eyesight?
What is the process following cataract surgery?
The patient can get back into a normal routine after the procedure. All he/she will have to do is follow logical precautionary guidelines such as avoiding knocks or rubbing eyes. In the three weeks following surgery, he/she will follow a simple treatment in the form of eye drops as directed by the Ophthalmologist.
A team of the highest professional standards
Central Ocular boasts a highly qualified professional medical team which has vast experience in presbyopia operations. Your vision could not be in better hands.
Our technological capabilities are based on the most advanced equipment which allows us to provide our patients undergoing presbyopia procedures with the best possible guarantees.
The best facilities
The outstanding facilities at Central Ocular mean that presbyopia procedures are performed in optimum conditions of safety and comfort for the patient. We make you feel right at home.
Our patients recommend us
The best form of publicity is provided by our patients who have undergone the presbyopia procedure. I wish I’d had it done sooner! A source of great satisfaction for the whole of our medical team.