About Traditional Surgery
Considered to be both very safe and exceedingly beneficial, traditional cataract surgery, referred to as phacoemulsification, is one of the most routinely done surgeries across the globe. The world-renowned team of eye surgeons at Vance Thompson Vision are experts in both traditional and laser cataract surgery and can decide which method is best for patients by providing comprehensive eye exams and full assessments of their general health. The most important difference between the two surgeries is that the traditional surgery is carried out with manual surgical tools, but the laser method is mainly done with state-of-the-art laser technology.
Cataract surgery is an outpatient procedure performed in three steps:
- A microscopic incision is made to allow a tiny instrument to pass through.
- A special device emits ultrasound waves to break the cataract into small pieces to be suctioned out.
- The natural eye lens is replaced with a new, artificial intraocular lens.
Our team in South Sioux City, NE will educate you on both of these approaches to cataract surgery during your consultation so you can make the best decision for vision goals. Schedule your one-on-one consultation at Vance Thompson Vision to find out more details about traditional cataract surgery.
Traditional Cataract Surgery Reviews
"Thank you Dr. Greenwood for the fine cataract surgery you did on my eyes. It’s like a whole new world out there!"- K.N. / Facebook / Jul 03, 2019
"So pleased that my Dad had his cataract surgery here. Amazing results and the staff is absolutely AMAZING. So patient, so kind, and so thoughtful. I can really tell that they care about older people. I will be recommending Vance and his staff to everyone!!"- E.M. / Facebook / May 15, 2017
"Both my husband and myself received the services of Dr. Greenwood, one year apart. Our experience has been excellent. We both had lenses placed at the time of our cataract surgery so we would not need to wear glasses and are extremely happy with the results. I also needed stents placed to address my condition of high pressures in my eyes and to avoid problems with glaucoma. The only issue I encountered following my surgery was with the eyesight in one eye that was not “as sharp” as Dr. Greenwood felt it should be. With one simple procedure he was able to get the vision 20/20 in that eye also. From our initial clinic visit, the kindness of everyone from front desk clerks and examining nurses through the surgical procedures, and then the follow up call to inquire how we were doing from Dr. Greenwood himself the evening of our surgeries, we couldn’t be more satisfied or happy with the results and have recommended Dr. Greenwood to others."- N.R. / Healthgrades / Aug 20, 2020
"The cataracts surgery was a breeze highly advised to have done"- S.G. / Google / Nov 06, 2018
"I was very nervous about cataract surgery. I know people say it's an easy surgery but when people are doing things to your eyes I get nervous. Dr Greenwood and staff made the experience very easy and did a great job. Before, during and after. Dr Greenwood even called me personally the night after each of my surgeries to make sure everything was good. I highly recommend them and put your mind at ease, they are very professional."- R.C. / Google / Nov 06, 2019
Best Candidates for Traditional Cataract Surgery
In general, most individuals who have cataracts are eligible for traditional cataract surgery, as long as they are in good general health. Some kinds of astigmatism could lessen the potential for the best results, which may impact a patient's eligibility for the treatment. However, some types of astigmatism can possibly be corrected at the same time as cataract surgery. Further, some preexisting eye problems, including macular degeneration or other retinal diseases, could affect a person's eligibility for cataract surgery. At Vance Thompson Vision, we will perform a full eye examination and assess any existing health concerns to determine whether traditional cataract surgery would be the most effective treatment path.
Traditional cataract surgery is an outpatient procedure that typically lasts around 15 minutes per eye. As with laser cataract surgery, the patient remains conscious; however, the eyes are totally numbed prior to starting the surgery to offer complete comfort. The majority of patients are quite pleased with how quick and pain-free the procedure is.
Your surgeon will situate a ring or suction device above each eye that hinders any blinking during the procedure. Next, a 1/8-inch incision will be made at the outside boundary of the cornea. After the incision is created, a separate instrument will be used to access the lens via the incision. This instrument disintegrates the cataracted lens with ultrasonic waves so it can be gently suctioned out and substituted with a new artificial lens through the same incision. The opening is so tiny that it doesn't need sutures and will heal on its own.
After your eyes have healed following surgery, you should notice improved, cataract-free eyesight, although you may still require glasses or contacts to see clearly.
Types of Lens Implants
When considering cataract surgery, it is important to understand your options for lens implants so you can pick the best IOL to match your lifestyle.
MonoFocal Lens Implants
A monofocal lens focuses your vision at one distance, whether near, immediate, or far away. Our standard monofocal lenses are highly advanced and designed for distance and improving image quality. This IOL allows you to have the sharpest possible vision at its set point, usually distance. Typically, you will still require bifocals or reading glasses for seeing up close. Our monofocal, the Tecnis lens, is a Wavefront-adjusted intraocular lens, which allows for improved distance vision, as well as clearer night vision and better contrast sensitivity.
Light Adjustable Lens Implants
To provide our patients with the clearest, most precise eyesight possible, our team is pleased to provide the revolutionary Light Adjustable Lens™ from RXSight®. This popular type of advanced intraocular lens gives patients and their doctors an advanced option to provide clear vision after cataract surgery.
With most other types of lOLs, the prescription specifications for the lens are set by your surgeon before surgery. Once the lens is implanted into your eye during cataract surgery, the process is complete and there are limited ways to further customize your vision. However, if you choose the Light Adjustable Lens, we will still implant it during cataract removal surgery. The primary difference is that you will undergo a series of UV light sessions that allow us to make precise vision adjustments to fit your preferences and lifestyle. We will perform one final light treatment to "lock in" the results.
Multifocal lens implants
Multifocal IOLs are designed to provide clear vision at multiple distances. These are especially beneficial for patients who already have presbyopia (farsightedness, or age-related vision decline) before cataract surgery. Multifocal implants can cut down or eliminate an individual's dependence on eyeglasses or contacts. Multifocal lenses, like ReStor and Tecnis, are designed using advanced materials and a highly specialized design. They are built of concentric circles, which help focus light at different distance ranges, including immediate, near, and far.
Toric Lens Implants
Recent advancements in IOL technology have made it possible for astigmatism patients to see clearly with less reliance on glasses or contacts. The toric lens, a new advancement in IOL technology, gives patients greater visual freedom. Astigmatism is a visual condition that results when the cornea is abnormally shaped. Toric IOLs are implanted into the eye during cataract surgery to decrease or eliminate astigmatism and provide sharp distant vision without as much of a need to wear glasses or contacts. Toric lenses can also strengthen contrast sensitivity and improve a patient's night vision.
Accommodating Lens Implants
An accommodating lens is implanted into the eye during cataract surgery to replace the natural lens. These specialized lenses are composed of a unique material that "flexes" within the eye to allow you to smoothly focus between a range of distances. The hinged structure of the lens allows it to move back and forth as your eye muscles contract and release. Accommodating lenses, such as the Crystalens, give patients the ability to see objects clearly at near, intermediate, and far away distances.
Premium Lens implants
For patients who want to reduce or eliminate the need for contacts or reading glasses, Vance Thompson Vision offers several advanced intraocular lenses (IOLs). These specialized lenses correct a patient's vision at varying distances, including near, immediate, far, and everything in between. Our doctors are highly knowledgeable about intraocular lenses, as well as advanced surgical techniques. During your consultation, we will work with you to determine which type of lens would best suit your vision needs and lifestyle.
What to Expect
When your surgery is complete, you will need a driver to take you home. You may have slightly distorted vision for one or two hours afterward; however, this is normal as your eye adjusts to the new lens. Our team will provide thorough post-op instructions that will aid in the best healing and outcomes. You will need to use prescribed eye drops and keep a protective shield over your eye as directed. Most individuals who have cataract surgery will have red eyes, plus some bruising that resembles a black eye for several days following the surgery, but this is temporary. Make sure to attend all follow-up appointments at our office, and please reach out to us if you have any questions.
We are here for you
At Vance Thompson Vision, our mission is to preserve your vision and total eye health. We're ready to help you understand and obtain any eye care you may need. If you have cataracts or believe you have the typical symptoms of cataracts, reach out to our South Sioux City, NE office to arrange a consultation for cataract removal surgery. Let us help you get on the path to experiencing life with clearer, cataract-free vision.