Terry Hemelt, MD & Andrew Benson, MD - Board Certified Eye Surgeons
Slidell, Louisiana
985-643-6355

Cataract Surgery

The most common and most successful surgery performed in the world

Cataract Surgery

Cataract Surgery

Cataract Surgery is the most common and most successful surgery performed in the world!! Over the last 25 to 30 years the procedure has been revolutionized. Incision sizes have been reduced by 80% and the occurrence of infection has been reduced by over 95%.

Primarily, cataract surgery is a functional procedure that replaces the cloudy lens of the eye with a clear implant. Today, however, because of the advances in technology, cataract surgery is as much a refractive procedure as it is a functional procedure. As is usually the case when technology advances, the consumer (or patient in this case) has more options to choose from! Read on to learn your options.

Standard Lens Implant

Until recently, this was the only choice of lens implants so the discussion of "which implant" you would choose for your surgery was not discussed. The standard implant is a monofocal implant which means it can only focus light at distance (driving, watching T.V., etc.) or near (reading, computer, etc.), but not both at the same time. Additionally, these lenses do not correct astigmatism. So if you do have astigmatism and you choose this implant, you will most likely require a pair of bifocals or progressives in order to achieve excellent visual acuity postoperatively. If you are fortunate enough to not have astigmatism, then you will more than likely achieve acceptable vision at distance or near without glasses with this implant but not both.

Refractive Lens Implants

Multifocal Lens Implant

Currently approved by the FDA for implantation only at the time of cataract surgery, this exciting new lens implant provides correction of both distance and near vision without the need for glasses. Although some people notice glare and halos around lights at night, the greatly reduced dependence on eyeglasses more than offsets this sometimes annoying side effect. Occasionally, some patients receiving this lens implant will require weak reading glasses while working at the computer and very rarely, eyeglasses may be required for some tasks at near. Some patients may choose to receive the MULTIFOCAL lens implant to reduce their dependence on glasses before they develop cataracts. The patient must, however, understand that this is an "off-label" use of this product (not FDA approved for this purpose) and must sign an informed consent that states that they understand this fact as well as all of the risks and benefits of the procedure.

Acrysof Toric Implant

The Acrysof Toric Implant is a special premium implant that is placed in the eye at the time of cataract surgery. The implant helps to greatly reduce naturally occurring astigmatism. Like the MULTIFOCAL lens implant, it can only be implanted in patients with visually significant cataracts. Additionally, with the correction of astigmatism, the implant functions like a standard implant in that it can correct for distance or near vision, but not both.

Toric Multifical Implants

The latest addition to the premium implant family is the multifocal toric implant. This implant corrects astigmatism as well as near and distance vision. Like the multifocal implant, glasses may still be required under certain circumstances.
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