For most people, cataract surgery goes smoothly. You end up with better vision and heal without any long-term issues. But like any surgery, there are risks, especially if you have other eye problems or a serious medical condition.
So it helps to know what might go wrong. You can keep a close watch on any symptoms and call your doctor if something seems off.
Germs that get in your eye during surgery can lead to an infection. You might feel sensitive to light or have pain, redness, and vision problems. If this happens to you, call your doctor right away.
A little swelling and redness after surgery is normal. If you have more than usual, you'll get eye drops or other medicine to take care of it.
The retina sits way back in your eye, sensing light and sending messages to the brain. After surgery, you have a slightly higher chance that it pulls away from the back of the eye, a problem called retinal detachment.
Itching is also among one of the possible side effects of cataract surgery for which you should not worry much, but only if remains mild. If it starts intensifying rather than subduing several days after the surgery, or becomes almost intolerable, you better seek immediate medical assistance to make sure it’s not the symptom of something serious.
Also among the most common symptoms of cataract surgery, blurriness in your vision is supposed to improve with the passage of time. If it persists, there might be some problem. So, contact an ophthalmologist as soon as possible to make sure you get a smooth sailing through your recovery process. You should also avoid driving until your vision is stable enough to do so.
Ptosis is another name commonly used for droopy eyelid, which might be triggered after cataract surgery. Though doctors are still unable to identify a specific reason behind this, but it usually settles at its own after sometime. If it’s still there after 6 months of the surgery, going to an ophthalmologist would be the best decision.
Any swelling in the cornea can simply be referred as the “Corneal Edema”. It might result after cataract surgery, an inflammation, a trauma, an infection or also as a result of various eye diseases or anything which can damage endothelial cells. Usually, the damage done to endothelial cells by a cataract surgery is not extensive and expected to resolve over time. Corneal edema affecting the eye after cataract surgery is also known as “Pseudophakic Bullous Keratopathy” (PBK) or “Pseudophakic Corneal Edema”.
While PBK tends to resolve soon after the surgery, most physicians prefer treating it with customized administration of topical steroids if it persists long enough. Thankfully though, your chances of getting corneal edema as a side-effect of cataract surgery nowadays are very slim.
Thankfully, of late, wound leaks have turned into a rarity when it comes to cataract surgery complications. Poor vision epiphora complaints, shallow anterior chamber and IOP less than 8mm Hg are some of the most common sings of wound leaks. Causes of the leakage, its severity as well as timing, all play a critical role in management of the leaks. Normally, it takes 24-48 hours in settlement of smaller wound leaks, which can be sometimes assisted with steroid based eye drops or medication. When the leakage is moderate, a bandage contact lens, an added aqueous or cycloplegic inhibitor might be required to check the flow. In rare event of severe leakage with shallow chamber and a low IOP, the patient must be sent for surgical repair treatment.
Quite often, cornea, the clear frontal region of the eye gets swollen and hazy due to ocular surgery performed over it, which can make it harder for you to see. However, this is almost always a temporary condition mostly improving within days or weeks sometimes. You may get eye drops as a treatment till the cornea loses its swelling.
Another of the very rare complications of cataract surgery, “Toxic Anterior Segment Syndrome” (TASS) surfaces between 12-72 hours after surgical treatment of cataracts. As a result of endothelial cell damage, corneal swelling is quite severe along with anterior segment inflammation. It is minimally painful and sterile, sparing vitreous. Anything from inappropriately sterile drops in the eye to contaminated surgical equipment used for the surgery can lead to TASS. It is usually treated with high doses of topical steroids on hourly basis.
It’s not that common, but there is a slight probability that retina’s blood vessels start bleeding without any apparent reason. There’s no issue with a little bleeding, as it settles down soon, but large amount of blood in eye can sometime lead to vision loss. Usually, eye doctors recommend a little bed rest with your head up coupled with eye drops. If the blood fails to drain, causing too much pressure in the eye, surgery can also be prescribed.
Surgical treatment for cataracts has improved significantly over time and you shouldn’t hesitate undergoing cataract surgery if your eye doctor recommends you one. However, ocular surgery becomes unfeasible sometimes due to various health complications or other reasons.
Delay in surgery can also be a possibility in many cases; for example, if your health insurance doesn’t cover the expenses until vision deterioration reaches to a certain level. Many people get quite frustrated under such circumstances in coping with the resulting vision loss.
Luckily, you can now resort to the assistance of low vision aids, which are specifically designed to improve your visual functioning, so that you can live independently and actively despite your vision impairment. Feel free to contact Iris Vision and learn more about how you can get some much needed help about your low vision conditions due to cataracts or other common eye diseases.
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *