With improvements in technology both in surgical techniques and Intraocular Lenses, refractive lens procedures have become more commonly performed not just purely to treat Cataract, but also to reduce dependence and often remove the need for visual hardware. In fact more candidates who do not have cataracts and not suitable for Laser Vision Treatment, are choosing to have clear refractive lens exchange in order to reduce or remove the need for glasses or contact lenses.
With an increasing ageing population, more active lifestyle and increased longevity more and more people are opting have treatment sooner rather than later, to improve quality of life through better vision.
Patients now more than ever have more options at their disposal and Surgeons better equipped at delivering better refractive outcomes through different types of Intraocular Lens Implants (IOL’s), laser cataract, small and micro-incisional surgical techniques.
Femtosecond laser is now also used to perform some cataract procedures, however, data shows the results are no better with Laser Cataract Surgery as compared to non Laser Cataract Surgery if performed by an experienced Surgeon. Laser cataract is performed similar to small or micro-incision cataract surgery, the only difference is that a laser is used to make the incisions – the remainder of the procedure is the same
A cataract is a clouding of the crystalline lens that causes gradual loss of vision and cause additional symptoms such as colours appearing “washed out”, glare and halos, poor night vision and at times double vision.
Left untreated, a cataract can eventually worsen at a pace that is different from person to person, eventually causing blindness. On the upside this type of blindness is temporary and once Cataract surgery is performed if the eye is otherwise healthy, full visual recovery is achievable.
The old adage “wait for the cataract to ripen” is now becoming more and more irrelevant – with increased longevity and more people staying active longer, most choose to have cataract treatment sooner, before it impacts quality of vision and life.
With improved safety, accuracy, better results and a myriad of Intraocular lens implant correcting for ocular aberrations, correct for distance, near or both and even Intraocular lens implants that can correct for astigmatism, no longer do we need to wait until a cataract is “ripe for the picking” – Improving the quality of life through better vision sooner is now a possibility.
Cataract surgery is one of the most commonly performed procedures in Australia. With people living longer, more active lifestyles people are opting to have treatment sooner rather than later and with precision improving an increased number of patients are not only able to see clearer but are also relatively spectacle independent for most activities.
Like Laser Vision Correction, correcting long-sightedness, short-sightedness and astigmatism whilst treating Cataracts is no longer an impossibility.
An in-depth look at Monovision
Dysfunctional Lens Syndrome (DLS) part of which is Presbyopia, is a progressive lens disorder that worsens with age and can result in the need to rely on reading glasses to perform near tasks. It encompasses the aging of the crystalline lens, with or without lens opacities, the inability to accommodate due to presbyopia and increased spherical aberrations and/or coma.
Between the ages of 40 to 50 years the lens starts to harden and lose focusing power, near vision starts to deteriorate and development of higher-order aberrations
At 50 to 65 years of age, the loss of near vision or focussing ability, Light scatter and Decreased contrast and night vision
65 Year Olds and above usually would have developed cataracts as the nucleus of the lens yellows, causing reduced vision, affecting color perception
For patients with DLS – Refractive lens exhange is the treatment of choice, with Monovision or Blended Vision being an effective alternative in reducing dependancy on glasses for near tasks such as reading, computer, sewing, reading menu or looking at price tags or lists when shopping.
They say 50 is the new 40 and 40 is the new 30 but regardless of where we draw the line in the sand, aging is inevitable and so is the need for reading glasses.
Presbyopia – the loss of the ability to focus at near, for most people, begin in their early 40’s, resulting in the need for visual hardware or correction for any near tasks, like reading, computer work, knitting, sewing even reading a menu or shopping list. In this day and age of convenience needing reading glasses or contact lenses for such tasks is the epitome of inconvenience.
Reducing the need for reading glasses is a possibilty via Clear Lens Exchange or via Laser Vision Correction.
The aim of vision correction or refractive surgery is to reduce dependency on glasses and contact lenses to achieve clarity of vision.
There is now very little that cannot be treated or corrected. While there have been leaps and bounds to refractive surgery with Laser Vision correction and Refractive Lens Exchange now becoming the “norm”, it is always important to understand that these procedures can have their limitations – realistic expectations is a must to avoid dissappointment. Furthermore by choosing an experienced surgeon you trust, increases the likelihood of success, whether it be Laser Vision Correction or Refractive Lens Exchange.
Since the dawn of Surgical treatment of cataracts in the mid 1700’s, surgical techniques have improved in leaps and bounds – sutureless wounds, incision getting smaller and a wide array of Intraocular lenses becoming available to make it possible to treat short-sightedness, long-sightedness, astigmatism and even presbyopia. Resulting in better vision post operatively with little or no need for visual hardware and shorter recovery time.
Now there is “Laser Cataract Surgery” – is it worth the extra cost?
Currently, research shows post operative results with “laser” cataract surgery is no better in comparison to conventional cataract surgery performed by an experienced surgeon.