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What Are The Risks Of Cataract Surgery?

December 10, 2018

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Cataract surgery is one of the most common surgical procedures. It is also one of the most performed procedures every year. Many people undergo cataract surgery every year without serious complications. The surgery is safe, effective, and low risk. 

Though it is considered a low risk surgery, it does still come with risks. It's important to be aware of these risks in case you have any complications. 

The sooner you can identify them, the faster you can receive treatment. It’s also important to distinguish between normal side effects and potential complications. Keep reading to learn some of the risks of undergoing cataract surgery!

Common Side Effects

After surgery, your eyes will need some time to heal. During the healing process, your eyes may feel itchy, sore, or like they have grit in them. 

You may also be sensitive to light for a few days after surgery, or experience blurry vision. This kind of discomfort is normal and usually goes away after a few days. If you're uncomfortable, you can manage your symptoms with prescription eye drops.

Rare Complications

In rare cases, there are things that can happen to your eyes due to surgery. These are more severe than the common side effects of cataract surgery. 

This includes bleeding, swelling, infection, ongoing pain, visual loss, retinal detachment, and a dislocated IOL.

Most of these complications are easy to spot.  If you experience bleeding, severe pain, or swelling, call your doctor. If your retina detaches, you will be able to tell. 

After the retina detaches, you'll see flashes and streaks of light that don't go away. Retinal detachment is a medical emergency! 

To avoid permanent vision loss, you need to go to the hospital as soon as possible.  If your IOL gets dislocated, you can tell because you will not be able to see through it. This is fixable with surgery. These complications are very rare, and many of them are preventable.

How To Minimize Risk 

The best way to minimize many of these risks is to care for your eyes following surgery. Infection is preventable by taking prescription eye drops. 

You should also keep your eyes clear of any debris. Do not rub your eyes for any reason! In the shower, avoid getting water into your eyes as you can get bacteria in them.

After cataract surgery, you should stick to light activities. This is recommended for the first couple of weeks following surgery. This reduces your risk of falling or bumping into something and hurting your eye. 

Your eyes will be fragile while healing. Even a minor bump could trigger bleeding, infection, dislocation, or retinal detachment. You should stick to sedentary activities until your doctor clears you. 

Cataract surgery is considered a low-risk procedure. The best way to reduce your risks is to follow all instructions from your doctor. This will keep your eyes healthy during recovery.

To learn more about cataract surgery and find out if it’s right for you, contact Omaha Eye today to schedule an appointment at one of our locations in Omaha or Lincoln, Nebraska.

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eye & laser institute

11606 Nicholas St.
Omaha NE 68154
Toll Free 800.766.8705
Local 402.493.2020
Fax 402.493.8987

eye & laser institute

Lincoln Eye & Laser Institute
755 Fallbrook Blvd. Suite 205
Lincoln, NE 68521
Toll Free 800.726.2647
Local 402.483.4448
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