WHAT ARE CATARACTS?
Cataracts are a clouding of the eye’s natural lens which grows progressively worse until they eventually lead to a complete loss of vision. However, cataracts are easily and commonly treated before vision loss becomes too severe.
Our eye functions like a camera. Its natural lens focuses images onto the back of the eye so we see clearly, much like the lens of a camera focuses images onto film for a clear picture. At birth, our natural lens is clear, but as we age it yellows and hardens and eventually becomes cloudy. The cloudy lens is referred to as a cataract. At first, this clouding doesn’t interfere with vision, but gradually impact how well you see. Left untreated, cataracts can lead to blindness. Most cataracts occur as a result of the natural aging process, but cataracts can also form as a result of injury or as a complication of glaucoma and diabetes. In rare cases, they may be present at birth.
Age-related cataracts generally begin to appear in the early to mid-50s. As the lens becomes cloudier, vision becomes more blurred. Some people are not even aware of the gradual deterioration in their vision. Symptoms that could indicate the presence of a cataract include:
- Faded or dull colors
- Problems with glare
- Sensitivity to light
- Halos around oncoming lights when driving
- Difficulty reading in low light
- Blurred or double vision
- Frequent need to change your glasses prescription.
Cataract surgery is the only way to remove a cataract. You should consider surgery when cataracts cause vision loss that begins to interfere with your daily activities. This might mean you’ve had to give up a favorite hobby, or no longer feels safe when driving at night. These are not activities you need to give up!
The cloudy lens (cataract) will be replaced by an artificial lens implant, called an intraocular lens (IOL). Until recently, all IOL’s were set for one distance; requiring most patients to need glasses after cataract surgery. Today, there are many replacement lens implant options available. Dr. Grayson will help you decide which lens is best for you, based on your individual needs and lifestyle.
LENS REPLACEMENT OPTIONS
Most surgeons place emphasis on the problem – the cataract. Instead, we focus on the solution – the replacement lens implant. The choice of lens implant is what provides the vision you will live with for the rest of your life, so we want to choose wisely.
There are many intraocular lens (IOL) choices once we remove your natural lens. Think of this implant choice based on how you use your vision for daily activities and treasured hobbies. Do you want a single focus lens, because you only need clear focus in the distance? Or do you want a zoom lens that will automatically adjust focus seamlessly from near to mid-range to distance?
Today, you have three choices for your replacement lens, each that offer a range of vision and clarity of vision that suits your lifestyle. Your decision should be based on the range of vision you’d like to achieve after lens surgery, and how the need for glasses for certain activities would bother you.
LENS REPLACEMENT RESULTS
When you are considering cataract surgery, you want to understand what vision improvement you can expect afterwards. Lens implant selection will be a key factor. Patients who select a multifocal or accommodating IOL, such as Panoptix, Symfony, or Tecnis MF generally enjoy a greater range of clear vision without the need for glasses for most routine tasks throughout the day.
CATARACT SURGERY AND LENS IMPLANT FEES
At Eye Care Northwest, our cataract surgery and lens replacement fees are simple and straightforward. We want to make it easy for you to focus on choosing the vision you’ll have for the rest of your life, without sorting through complicated fee schedules. Below is our pricing for presbyopia-correcting implants and astigmatism-correcting implants. Dr. Grayson will discuss your vision needs, asking questions about how you use your vision, and recommend the optimal lens choice based on your lifestyle and eye health.