When to Have Cataract Surgery

In some cases, patients can manage their cataracts with only nonsurgical treatment. However, if cataracts limit your mobility or make daily activities difficult to accomplish, surgery may be a better option. Sometimes, though, it can be difficult to know exactly when to have cataract surgery.

The doctors at Ophthalmology Physicians & Surgeons, PC in Montgomery, Bucks, and Northampton Counties, PA, can treat cataracts through a safe and effective surgery. Our team will highlight the early and advanced symptoms of the condition and help you determine when surgical intervention may be necessary.

Early Cataract Symptoms

The early symptoms of cataracts are not always obvious. While some individuals quickly notice when their night vision worsens or when glares and halos appear around light sources, not everyone does. In fact, in some cases, patients will actually notice improved near vision before their overall eyesight starts deteriorating, a phenomenon referred to as “second sight."

By keeping regular appointments with your doctors, though, you may increase your chances of catching these early signs of cataracts. If so, many patients find that their symptoms are easily addressed with prescription eyewear.

Diagram comparing eye with and without cataracts.
Because cataracts literally cloud the lens in your eye, they can easily compromise your vision. 

   

Advanced Cataract Symptoms

As time goes on, cataract symptoms usually worsen. Light sensitivity and blurred vision become more acute while distinguishing between colors becomes more difficult. Poor night vision is especially pronounced. Older patients, patients who use certain medications, and patients who smoke are unfortunately at higher risk of developing these symptoms more quickly. If the condition is left untreated for too long, patients may even have difficulty recognizing facial features or performing routine tasks.

When to Consider Cataract Surgery

Patients who suffer from advanced cataracts are often distressed and frustrated by a loss of independence. As symptoms progress, many need help with even daily activities, from reading to moving around the house. Patients with advanced cataracts are particularly prone to trips and falls, which can ultimately limit their mobility. In certain cases, advanced symptoms can even put others at risk, particularly if you frequently drive at night.

If your symptoms are undermining your quality of life, it is time to consider cataract surgery. During a consultation with our doctors, we can design a treatment plan that is personalized to your needs.

If your symptoms are undermining your quality of life, it is time to consider cataract surgery.

Planning for Your Cataract Surgery

Generally, most surgeons prefer that you stay in town for up to one month after your surgery so that they can monitor your recovery appropriately. Any vacations or out-of-town travel should be planned with this in mind.

Additionally, you will need a trusted friend or family member to stay with you up to a week after your procedure. Ideally, this individual should be available to assist you in administering eye drops, grocery shopping, meal preparation, housework, and other tasks. While most patients are self-sufficient within a few days, it is helpful to have someone close by just in case they are needed.

Decide the Best Time for Your Care

If you believe early or advanced cataract symptoms are impacting your vision, we can diagnose the severity of your condition and establish an appropriate time to move forward with surgery. Our team is available to answer any questions you may have about potential treatments. For more information, call our office at (215) 672-4300 or contact us online anytime.

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