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A cataract occurs when proteins in your eye's natural lens break down, making your vision cloudy, blurry, hazy, or less colorful. At first, stronger lighting and eyeglasses can help you manage to live with cataracts. However, once visual impairment interferes with your ability to read, work, or do the things you enjoy, it’s time to consider cataract surgery in Manhattan at New York Laser Vision. 

What are cataracts? 

Your eyes have natural lenses through which light passes, allowing you to see. These lenses should be clear throughout your life, but they may lose their transparency and become cloudy, known as a cataract.

Most cataracts develop slowly and don't disturb your eyesight early on, but with time, cataracts will progressively interfere with your vision.

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What are the different types of cataracts? 

  • Cataracts that affect the center of the lens, causing it to become more densely yellow or brown gradually and further cloud your vision
  • Cataracts that affect the edges of the lens which begin as whitish, wedge-shaped streaks on the outer edge of the lens cortex
  • Cataracts that affect the back of the lens which progress faster than other types of cataracts
  • Congenital cataracts may be genetic or associated with an intrauterine infection or trauma. These cataracts may also be due to certain conditions, such as myotonic dystrophy, galactosemia, neurofibromatosis type 2, or rubella.

What causes cataracts?

Aging is the most common cause due to regular eye changes that begin to happen after age forty. People over age sixty generally start to have some clouding of their lenses, but vision issues may not occur until years later.

In younger people, cataracts can result from:

  • Having immediate family members who have cataracts
  • Certain medical conditions such as diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Experiencing an eye injury, eye surgery, or radiation treatments on your upper body
  • Spending a lot of time in the sun, especially without sunglasses that protect your eyes from damaging UV rays
  • Using certain medications such as corticosteroids may cause the early formation of cataracts

Symptoms of cataracts 

At first, the cloudiness in your vision may affect only a tiny part of the eye's lens, so you may be unaware of any vision loss. However, as the cataract grows more prominent, it clouds more of your lens and distorts the light passing through the lens. The result is more-noticeable symptoms.

Most age-related cataracts develop gradually, but others can develop more quickly, such as those in younger people or people with diabetes. Doctors cannot predict how quickly a person’s cataract will develop.

Signs and symptoms of cataracts include:

  • Clouded, blurred, or dim vision
  • Increasing difficulty with night vision
  • Sensitivity to light and glare
  • Need for brighter light when reading and doing other activities
  • Seeing "halos" around lights
  • Frequent changes in eyeglass or contact lens prescription
  • Fading or yellowing of colors
  • Double vision in a single eye

Am I a good candidate for cataract surgery?

Eye doctors suggest considering cataract surgery when your cataracts affect your quality of life or interfere with your ability to perform routine daily activities, such as reading or driving at night.

If your cataracts impede your vision and you are in reasonably good health, you’re likely a candidate for cataract surgery in Manhattan with our eye doctors. A good candidate for cataract surgery has no medical condition that could prevent proper wound healing. People with diabetes with poorly managed health and advanced retinopathy, as well as patients with glaucoma, are not good candidates for cataract surgery. 

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What can I expect from cataract surgery? 

The surgery usually takes under an hour. Your New York Laser Vision surgeon will make a tiny incision in the front of your eye, sometimes with the help of a laser. After they break up and suction out the cataract, your surgeon will insert the new lens and close the incision.

You won't need to stay overnight at the hospital, but you will need someone to drive you home. Additionally, if you have cataracts in both eyes, you'll likely undergo two separate surgeries a few weeks apart.

Intraocular lenses, or IOLs, are artificial lenses that replace the eye’s natural lens when removed during the cataract surgery procedure. Until recently, every lens implant simply acted as a fixed-focus lens, allowing a person to see well at a distance or close-up, but never both. Additionally, people who receive these implants need reading glasses for close work.

Newer, premium lens implants can provide both reading, intermediate, and distance vision without glasses for people undergoing cataract or refractive lens implant surgery. These include:

  • Multifocal lenses
  • Trifocal lenses
  • Extended range of vision lenses

Thanks to modern improvements, premium lenses are also available to those with astigmatism. However, each type of implant works differently, so not all implants are suitable for all patients. Our experienced and expert eye surgeons will help you decide which implant will work best to provide a lifetime of clear vision.

Recovery from cataract surgery

After cataract surgery, you’ll get eye drops to help your eye heal, and you may need to wear a special eye shield or glasses. You’ll likely need to avoid some activities for a few weeks, such as touching your eye, bending over, and lifting heavy objects.

Your eye may feel itchy or uncomfortable and sensitive to light and touch for the first two days following your cataract surgery. Most people are entirely healed eight weeks after their surgery. 

Why choose us for your cataract surgery?

As one of the best cataract surgeries Manhattan offers, our method is relatively painless and is one of the most frequently performed surgical procedures in the United States. With more than 98 percent of patients regaining functional vision, cataract surgery at New York Laser Vision is an effective way to relieve the problems caused by cataracts.

Additionally, we offer several other vision correction options to help you enjoy your total clarity of vision once more. When performed alongside cataract surgery, these vision correction procedures can fully restore the clarity and quality of your vision. We believe this makes us the best choice for cataract surgery.

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Can cataracts be prevented or reversed?

No, but wearing high-quality sunglasses with UV protection can slow the progression of a cataract.

When is the best time to have cataract surgery?

It should be removed if a cataract impairs your vision or your lifestyle. If the cataract remains stable, surgery may not yet be necessary.

Can cataracts return after surgery?

No, because the lens where the cataract forms have been removed and replaced.

Is cataract surgery painful?

A local anesthetic will keep you from experiencing pain during your procedure, and you’ll receive a mild sedative to help you relax.

Do I need glasses after cataract surgery?

With standard IOL implants, vision becomes clear, but reading eyeglasses may still be necessary if you wore them before cataracts developed.

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