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Laser Cataract Surgery
Albuquerque Laser Cataract Surgery
What is a Cataract?
Your natural crystalline lens is made up of water and protein. It stands behind the pupil and focuses light onto the retina, which transmits signals to the brain. Think of the retina as being the film of a camera.
Cataracts occur when the proteins within the crystalline lens begin to cluster together, creating cloudy areas on the lens, which can prevent light from reaching your retina.
There is nothing that can be done to prevent the clumping of these proteins. For most adults over 50, cataracts are a natural part of the aging process.
Initially, cataracts may not cause any symptoms. People only know that they have cataracts when symptoms begin to show. These protein clusters can become larger over time, gradually obscuring more and more of your vision.
It can be scary to see that your vision is changing, but there’s no need to live with visual impairment due to cataracts. Laser cataract surgery is safe, effective, and has a short recovery period.
Do I have a Cataract?
If you or a loved one think that you may be suffering from cataracts, it’s likely that you’ve already noticed some of the initial symptoms of the condition. Cataract symptoms may include:
- Double vision in one eye.
- Dry eye.
- Yellowing/ fading of colors.
- Frequent eyeglass or contact lens prescription change.
- Need for bright light, or sensitivity to light.
- Cloudy or blurry vision.
What is laser cataract surgery?
For some patients, this condition can be very difficult because it can prevent them from participating in normal daily activities, such as reading or driving. A corrective procedure to remove the clouded lens and replace it with a lens implant (also know as intraocular lens (IOL)) can restore a patient’s visual acuity.
In addition to improved visual clarity, there are many other benefits of cataract surgery performed by Dr. Melendez. Namely, Dr. Melendez performs Refractive Cataract Surgery by performing laser-assisted cataract surgery with premium IOLs in an effort to maximize your visual results. The most apparent benefit of cataract surgery is a clearer, sharper vision.
Laser Cataract Surgery Technology:
- LenSx femtosecond laser: Standard cataract surgery involves using a blade for all incisions, but with the LenSx laser the procedure is bladeless with the precision of a laser.
- ORA with VerifEye+ (Optiwave Rrefractive Analysis): This system monitors the patient’s eye during cataract surgery to provide real-time measurements that help the surgeon further customize your vision with incredible accuracy.
What happens to the lens with age?
- Around 40 years of age, one begins to lose their near vision and worsens each year that requires reading glasses to see up close.
- Around 50 years of age, the lens begins to lose its clarity slightly and one begins seeing abnormally whether at night or during the daytime.
- Around 60 years of age and above, the lens can become cloudy and worsens with age causing a significant cataract that is affecting vision and limiting one’s ability to perform their daily activities such as reading, watching TV, playing sports, driving during the daytime or at night.
How to correct one’s vision?
Depending on your vision goals and the whether the issue is with your cornea or lens, Dr. Melendez will evaluate the entire visual system to determine what is your best option to correct your vision. With the all of the latest technology, we can help you become less dependent upon glasses if that is your goal.
If you do not mind wearing glasses, then Dr. Melendez recommends staying with your glasses after the surgery, the difference of course would be that your vision will be clearer, sharper, more vibrant, and even better contrast after the surgery.
Some individuals desire to get rid of their glasses and in most instances, this can now be achieved with newer laser technology that is more precise and predictable.
What are my lens options?
There are different types of lens implants that you can choose from to meet your goals and needs. Traditional monofocal lenses will provide you with clear vision at one distance, while multifocal lenses provide focus at a range of distances. Dr. Melendez can help you determine which type of lens will best suit your needs.
Lens Implant Options for Cataract Surgery:
- Monofocal lens implants: Improves clarity, but likely still needs glasses.
- Toric lens implants: Corrects vision and astigmatism to see at one distance.
- Multifocal lens implants: Focuses light at 2 different distances. More than 90% of patients can see near and far without glasses and some still may need glasses for very fine near work or night time driving.
- PanOptix lens implants: Focuses light at 3 different distances.
Don’t be overwhelmed by the choices, but rather focus on where you would like to see and we can help you decide what is best for you and your vision. Every patient is different, and Dr. Melendez will customize the right treatment for your eyes.
RLE (Refractive Lens Exchange)
Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) is quite similar to cataract surgery. The only difference is that the lens removed from the eye in RLE is clear (not yet a cataract) rather than clouded.
The procedure removes the natural lens of the eye, replacing it with an intraocular lens (IOL). A multi-focal lens implant corrects the prescription to give you greater focus and reduce your need for reading glasses or bifocals.