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7 Important Questions to Ask Before Cataract Surgery

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An eye doctor sits on a chair during an eye exam. A patient looks towards a phoropter machine while a friendly doctor discusses their options for cataract surgery and answers their questions related to the procedure.

Cataract surgery is a big decision that can significantly impact your vision and quality of life. To ensure you’re well-prepared, ask the following cataract surgery questions during your preoperative consultation:

1. What’s the Difference Between Laser and Traditional Cataract Surgery?

Traditionally, cataracts are removed through a small incision in the eye to extract the cloudy lens. However, most cataract surgeries today utilize lasers like laser-assisted cataract surgery, which uses the bladeless LenSx laser system to remove the cataract. Though both are effective, knowing the differences between these approaches will help you make an informed choice.

2. Which Type of Intraocular Lens (IOL) is Best for Me?

After cataract removal, an intraocular lens (IOL) is implanted to restore vision. There are three main types of IOLs: 

  • Monofocal Lenses: These lenses improve vision at a specific distance (near, intermediate, or far). Most patients choose monofocal lenses for distant vision and use glasses or contacts for other tasks.
  • Extended Depth of Focus (EDOF) Lenses: These lenses are a new technology used in the treatment of presbyopia. Unlike multifocal lenses, EDOF lenses create a single elongated focal point, enhancing depth of focus for improved vision at various distances.

At Griffey Eye Care & Laser Center, Dr. Griffey and Dr. Mitrev will discuss your options to determine the best fit for your lifestyle and visual needs.

3. Will I Need Glasses After Surgery?

Needing glasses post-surgery depends on your vision before cataracts and the type of IOL implanted. Monofocal lenses often require additional correction, while EDOF lenses offer more comprehensive vision. Ask a licensed optician specializing in face shape, coloring, and vision needs about your case. Griffey Optical Services has over 700 designer frames to choose from.

4. Who Will Perform the Surgery?

Meeting your surgeon before the operation can put your mind at ease. Clarify who will be performing the surgery and learn about their qualifications. At Griffey Eye Center, our highly trained staff has over 50 years of combined experience with board-certified physicians from esteemed medical backgrounds. Laser cataract surgery in Chesapeake, VA, is performed by a third-generation board-certified ophthalmologist, Paul M. Griffey, M.D., and a veteran and experienced cataract & lens replacement surgeon, Peter V. Mitrev M.D..

5. How Much Will Cataract Surgery Cost, and What Will My Insurance Cover?

On average, the cost can vary significantly based on location, the surgeon’s experience, and the facility where the surgery is performed. Ask your ophthalmologist about the total cost of cataract surgery and how much your insurance, like Medicare, will cover. This transparency prepares you for any out-of-pocket expenses. 

6. Can I Safely Perform Daily Activities After Surgery?

Immediately following cataract surgery, patients may experience mild discomfort, blurred vision, or sensitivity to light, which can temporarily affect their ability to perform daily activities. Typically, clear vision is restored within a few hours to a few days. However, we advise taking precautionary measures like avoiding heavy lifting, driving, or strenuous activities for at least a week. Your surgeon can guide you on what to expect during the recovery period.

7. What Preparations Do I Need to Make Before Surgery?

During your preoperative appointment, Dr. Griffey or Dr. Mitrev will conduct a comprehensive examination to assess your suitability for the surgery and determine the correct power of the intraocular lens (IOL) needed for your lens replacement. This appointment is also an opportunity to discuss the various IOL options available to you. 

To prepare for the procedure and promote a smooth recovery, you will be prescribed specific eye drops before and after the surgery. Additionally, we will review your medical history in detail and address any questions or concerns you may have about the upcoming surgery. Ensure you follow any dietary restrictions provided, such as when to stop eating and drinking, and confirm if a checkup with your regular provider is needed.

For more information on questions and concerns related to cataract surgery, request an appointment with our ophthalmologist at Griffey Eye Care & Laser Center.

**Please note that the suggestions provided in this blog are for general informational purposes only and may not be suitable for your specific insurance plan and cataract needs. It is important to consult a qualified healthcare professional for personalized advice and treatment.**

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