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Cataracts - what to ask your doctor

Definition

You are having a procedure to remove a cataract. A cataract occurs when the lens of the eye becomes cloudy and starts to block vision. Removing the cataract can help improve your vision.

Below are some questions you may want to ask your doctor or nurse to help you take care of your eye after surgery.

Alternate Names

What to ask your doctor about cataracts; Lens implants - what to ask your doctor

Questions

What is a cataract?

How will cataract surgery help my vision?

  • If I have cataracts in both eyes, can I have surgery on both eyes at the same time?
  • How long after surgery before I notice my vision is better?
  • Will I still need glasses after surgery? For distance? For reading?

How do I get ready for surgery?

  • When do I need to stop eating and drinking before surgery?
  • Should I have a check up with my regular doctor before surgery?
  • Do I need to stop taking or change any of my medicines?
  • What else do I need to bring with me on the day of surgery?

What happens during cataract surgery?

  • How long will the surgery take?
  • What type of anesthesia will I have? Will I feel any pain during the surgery?
  • How do the doctors make sure I won't move during cataract surgery?
  • Is the cataract removed with a laser?
  • Will I need a lens implant?
  • What are the risks of cataract surgery?

What happens after cataract surgery?

  • Will I have to spend the night in the hospital? How long will I need to spend at the surgical center?
  • Will I have to wear an eye patch?
  • Can I shower or bathe at home?
  • What activities can I do while I recover? When will I be able to drive? When can I be sexually active?

Review Date: 11/20/2012
Reviewed By: Franklin W. Lusby, MD, Ophthalmologist, Lusby Vision Institute, La Jolla, California. Also reviewed by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, David R. Eltz, Stephanie Slon, and Nissi Wang.
The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
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