What is cataract?
When this natural lens becomes opaque (ie loses transparency) it is known as cataract
When does one need to have cataract surgery?
Cataract surgery is advised when
- There is loss of vision.
- There is disturbing glare (difficulty in seeing in bright light) or haloes (seeing coloured rings around a light source).
- The cataract has become too hard, although vision is normal, which is a common situation
- Difficulty in treating other eye diseases, unless the cataract is removed.
What are the steps of cataract surgery?
Cataract surgery consists of two stages –
- Cataract removal – Consists of removing the cataract.
- Intraocular lens (IOL) implantation– Consists of placing the IOL inside the eye
Diabetic Retinopathy Screening Camps
Diabetic Retinopathy screening camps are often held in community vision centers because screening people for this disease requires special medical expertise. DR screening camps are specialized exclusively in the diagnosis and treatment of this disease. However, while the focus is on detecting diabetic retinopathy before it causes irreversible blindness (and this sometimes means detecting diabetes in patients who don’t know they have it), patients who suffer from other eye disorders will also be referred to our main hospital.
What pre-operative investigations are required before surgery?
At Susrut, the following pre-operative investigations are advised
- Biometry – To determine the power of intraocular lens (IOL).
- Specular microscopy – To determine the health of the cornea.
- Syringing – To check the patency of the passage between the eye and nose.
- Corneal topography – To detect corneal aberrations if you are considering toric or multifocal IOLs.
- OCT (optical coherence tomography) – To detect retina abnormalities in patients with suspected retinal problems.
- USG – To detect structural (not functional) condition of retina in patients with very advanced cataracts.
- RAM – to predict the vision after surgery (not possible for very advanced cataracts).
- Blood pressure.
- Blood glucose (both fasting and post-prandial for diabetic patients).
- Physician clearance – For patients with other health issues (heart disease, breathing trouble, etc).
What options do I have for cataract removal?
- 1. Phacoemulsification – Here, the cataract is removed, with the help of ultrasound energy. Before liquefying and sucking the cataract, the steps done manually are (i) entering inside the eye, (ii) opening the anterior capsule (the front layer of the covering of the natural lens), and (iii) breaking the cataract.
- 2. Femto-second laser assisted cataract surgery (FLACS) – Here, a laser (femtosecond laser) is used (i) to enter inside the eye, (ii) open the anterior capsule and (iii) divide the cataract (instead of doing these steps manually). Then the ultrasound machine, same as in phacoemulsification, is used to liquefy and suck out the cataract. FLACS adds to the accuracy and precision of the procedure.