Foggy or clouded vision is often the result of cataracts, which form on the lens of the eye. To restore clear vision, we replace the damaged natural lens with an artificial intraocular lens (IOL). Patients have two options for this procedure: traditional or laser cataract surgery.
At Byrd & Wyandotte Eye Clinic, Dr. Thomas Byrd performs only laser cataract surgery, because it has distinct advantages over traditional surgery. To learn more, contact one of our offices in Detroit, MI, Dearborn Heights, MI, or Lincoln Park, MI.
What Happens during Cataract Surgery?
After administering local anesthesia, a circular incision will be made in your cornea, which is the outermost layer of the eye. This will provide access to the clouded lens and the capsule that contains it. Next, the laser will cut the capsule to reveal the lens. Then, the laser will soften the lens to the point that it dissolves into smaller pieces, which will be removed by suction. Finally, an intraocular lens (IOL) will be implanted into the capsular bag. No stitches are required.
With traditional cataract surgery, the incisions are made with a handheld blade and the lens is broken with ultrasound or a vibrating needle.
In laser cataract surgery, all of these tasks are performed with a femtosecond laser.
The exact size and shape of a person’s eye structures is unique. Before he begins any laser cataract surgery, Dr. Byrd uses special software to create a digital diagram, or 3-D map, of the patient’s eye.
Your 3-D map will direct computer-guided technology to guide the laser during your procedure. The corneal and capsular incisions will be made to exact specifications for position, depth, and length. When made with a laser, these incisions are about ten times more accurate than those made by hand with a blade.
Furthermore, your IOL will be placed in the ideal position to achieve your vision goals.
Corneal incisions using lasers take between 20 and 45 seconds to make. The entire laser cataract procedure generally lasts 20 minutes. You should schedule two to two-and-a-half hours for your appointment.
Recovery is often quicker with the laser procedure. The process of breaking up the clouded lens (phacoemulsification) by laser actually softens the lens and dissolves it into small pieces. With traditional surgery, a small needle is vibrated to break up the lens, though ultrasonic vibration (use of sound waves) is also an option.
In short, lasers create less trauma to eye tissues, so recovery is speedier. However, Dr. Byrd recommends that you take precautions for three days, while your eye structures heal.
Studies show that laser cataract surgery is marginally safer than the traditional method.
Other Advantages of Laser over Traditional Surgery
Specially calibrated IOLs can correct some vision issues, beyond cataracts
A particular, precise angled incision is created for astigmatism patients
Better results when cataracts are dense or the incision is difficult
Improve Your Vision at Byrd & Wyandotte Eye Clinic
Cataracts will not heal naturally. In fact, they usually worsen and can ultimately cause blindness. If you have clouded vision, regardless of your age, it’s time to talk to Dr. Byrd about laser cataract surgery. Call one of our eastern Ohio optometry clinics at (734) 284-2444 today to schedule your consultation appointment with Dr. Byrd.