When is the right time for cataract surgery?
Previously, we’ve talked about the “ripeness” of cataracts and is referenced here to review what factors need to be considered when deciding the right timing for your cataract surgery.
Most of us will develop cataracts and require surgery at some point, but when is that point?
Do you Have Symptoms?
Symptoms of cataract include blurry vision, glare, need for more light, increasing difficulty with night vision and driving, etc.
Symptoms generally develop slowly over months or even years. Cataracts usually do not happen suddenly.
Slowly worsening symptoms of glare, blurry vision, etc. may be evidence of cataracts, but could be signs of other disease, too (please get checked).
Do you Have Cataracts?
Come in for an eye examination. We need to confirm that your symptoms are indeed due to the presence of cataracts and not something else.
Symptoms of other eye diseases can mimic cataracts. A thorough eye examination should allow us to confirm that cataracts are causing your problems.
Will Cataract Surgery Help?
In addition to making the diagnosis of cataracts, part of our examination will be to insure that, if performed, cataract surgery is likely to improve your vision.
Patients with visual symptoms and cataracts can have other eye problems, too. As an example, patients can have decreased vision and cataract, but also suffer from macular degeneration. The macular degeneration, a disease of the retina, may actually be responsible for most of the vision loss and not the cataract.
Removing cataracts, though present, may not be helpful, in this scenario.
Criteria for Surgery
Most insurance companies have visual requirements to cover the costs of cataract surgery. As part of our examination, we will be careful to document your vision with glasses and may use glare testing to further assess your visual complaints.
If you do not meet the minimum requirements for cataract surgery, we will help you with understanding your options.
Do You Want to See Better?
While this may be intuitive for many of us, others are quite happy with their level of vision and function and may not be interested with eye surgery. We understand there are a variety of reasons why a patient with cataracts may elect to postpone any eye surgery.
What Can You Do?
If you are having symptoms of blurry vision, glare, halos around light, etc., make an appointment with us, or your own eye doctor, to get a full examination.
We look forward to seeing you. If you have questions or want to make an appointment, please give us a call.