Cataract surgery is one of the most commonly performed procedures in the United States. It is a safe and effective way to restore vision and improve quality of life. However, it is important to be aware of the potential risks and complications associated with the procedure, as well as when to call the doctor after cataract surgery. After cataract surgery, patients usually stay at the doctor's office for about an hour to make sure their eye pressure doesn't increase.
The surgeon will also prescribe antibiotic and anti-inflammatory eye drops to help reduce any internal inflammation in the surgical eye. Patients should use all of the drops, exactly as prescribed, until they disappear, unless their surgeon tells them otherwise. The day after surgery, patients should return for their first follow-up appointment, which usually lasts less than an hour. During this visit, the doctor will check for any signs of infection or other complications.
If any of these occur, patients should contact their surgeon immediately. Patients should also contact their doctor if they experience any sudden changes in vision, severe eye pain, or other concerns in the days following cataract surgery. These could be signs of retinal detachment, a rare complication of cataract surgery that occurs when the retina separates from the back of the eye. Additionally, if blurred vision doesn't go away after a week, patients should see their ophthalmologist as this could be due to residual refractive error (the eyes still need additional correction with glasses), eye dryness, or opacity of the back capsule (PCO).
It is also important to tell your doctor if you take any medications for prostate problems, as some of these medicines may interfere with cataract surgery. In some cases, cataract surgery may not improve vision due to underlying eye damage caused by other conditions such as glaucoma or macular degeneration. If you have cataracts in both eyes, your doctor usually schedules the second surgery after the first eye has healed. Finally, what some patients experience weeks or months after cataract surgery is the opacity of this membrane. This is why it is important to follow up with your doctor regularly after cataract surgery and report any changes in vision or other symptoms.