Can You Correct Astigmatism During Cataract Surgery?
Developing cataracts is a mostly unavoidable part of getting older. Most people eventually develop them, so it’s best to plan on needing cataract surgery as you age.
Luckily, it is not a complicated procedure and has an incredible rate of success. Cataract surgery can give you better vision than you had before you developed cataracts! Especially if you have astigmatism.
The eyesight you get from cataract surgery depends on what you want to invest in it. Keep reading to learn more about cataract surgery and how it can correct astigmatism.
What is an IOL?
Cataract surgery is a procedure that removes and replaces your cataract-afflicted natural lens. It gets replaced with an intraocular lens or IOL that provides clear vision.
IOLs are very durable and should provide you quality eyesight for the rest of your life. Before your procedure, you and your eye doctor will work together to select the right IOL for you.
Certain IOLs can correct your astigmatism. So you will consider that when selecting your lens.
How Does Cataract Surgery Work?
To remove your natural lens, your surgeon creates an incision in your cornea. This opening allows them to insert a probe into your eye to break your natural lens apart.
Breaking the lens into smaller pieces makes it easier to take out of your eye. The lens pieces then get gently suctioned out of your eye to make room for the IOL.
The IOL gets secured in the same membrane that held your natural lens, and the incision gets closed. There are no stitches or adhesive required to keep the cornea closed. It attaches on its own.
But, you will need to be particularly careful, as the incision can tear easily as you recover. Be sure to follow all guidelines your surgeon gives you.
Selecting an IOL – Standard vs. Premium
You will need a premium IOL if you want to reduce your dependence on glasses after your cataract surgery. Standard or monofocal IOLs can only give you vision at a single distance. You’ll need to wear glasses to make up for the other distances.
Premium IOLs, on the other hand, can provide good sight at multiple ranges. Specialized IOLs called toric IOLs are even able to correct astigmatism!
Toric IOLs are unique because they work to correct each individual’s astigmatism. This requires specific placement in your eye when they get placed in the empty membrane in your eye. IOLs that only treat myopia or hyperopia are symmetrical and don’t need as much attention to detail.
Whether you decide to get a monofocal IOL or a premium one depends on how much you are willing to invest in your sight. Many people lead comfortable lives using glasses every day. Others find that lifestyle to be limiting.
Most insurance plans and Medicare only cover the cost of cataract surgery with monofocal IOLs. If you want true visual freedom, you’ll have to pay for your premium IOLs. But the freedom from glasses is worth it!
Your eye doctor can help you select the right IOL, depending on your desired vision. If you think it’s time for cataract surgery, schedule an appointment at Kovach Eye Insitute in Itasca, IL. Clear eyesight for the rest of your life is possible with cataract surgery!