Cataract Treatments in Napa, CA

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What Are Cataracts?

Cataracts are a common eye issue for most people; in fact, some 90% of people over age 65 have cataracts. They typically develop slowly over many years and begin to cause visual disturbances such as difficulty reading or driving. In the beginning, brighter lights or glasses can help minimize the symptoms, but over time, the cloudiness of the natural lens will progress, and surgery is typically necessary if you want to see better. Thankfully, cataracts are a very treatable condition. In fact, cataract surgery is the most commonly performed surgery in the world, and your vision can be restored with a procedure typically lasting less than twenty minutes. We will make sure your eye cataract treatment is as comfortable as possible.

Who Is a Candidate for Cataract Surgery?

Typically, you are a good candidate for cataract surgery if you're in good general health and have no current medical condition that will interfere with wound healing. Once your cataracts have started to impact your daily life, you may be eligible for treatment. The signs that you are a good candidate for cataract surgery may include:

  • Cloudy or blurry vision
  • Difficulty seeing at night
  • Fading colors
  • Double vision
  • Glares and halos around lights

Contact our team if you're searching for cataract treatment in Napa, CA. We'll work with you to customize a treatment plan that addresses your needs. Request a consultation today to get started.

What Are the Benefits of Cataract Treatments?

Many of our patients have found that cataract surgery has several benefits. Individuals suffering from cataracts that elect to have cataract surgery experience improved vision almost immediately. Some of the other common benefits of cataract treatments include:

  • Simple recovery
  • Quick and effective procedure
  • Overall improved quality of life
  • Protects your eyes from developing further cataract-related issues

What Are the Symptoms of Cataracts?

Understanding the symptoms of cataracts is essential for maintaining good eye health. When wondering about the signs of this common condition, it's crucial to be aware of several key indicators. Some common symptoms associated with cataracts include:

  • Blurred or cloudy vision
  • Sensitivity to glare
  • Difficulty seeing at night
  • Experiencing double vision in one eye

These symptoms typically develop gradually and may initially go unnoticed, but early detection is vital for effective management. If you're experiencing any of these signs, scheduling an eye exam promptly is recommended to ensure appropriate intervention and preserve optimal vision.

How Are Cataracts Diagnosed?

To diagnose a patient with a cataract, an ophthalmologist or optometrist needs to perform an in-depth eye exam. Our team at Eye Specialists of Napa Valley is widely trained on the tests given in an in-depth cataract exam. The most effective tests to examine an eye for a cataract are all very simple, quick, and cause little to no discomfort.

To start, we will give the patient a routine acuity test. This is generally done with an eye chart. Next, we will often perform a contrast sensitivity test. A contrast test is very similar to a vision test, except it determines the patient’s ability to see contrast. Following the acuity and contrast tests, a slit-lamp exam is typically done. During a slit-lamp exam, we use a special microscope that directs a strong but extremely thin “slit” of light into the eye to observe its outermost structures. To complete the tests, we will perform the retinal exam and, perhaps, a potential acuity (PAM) exam. Before these tests, enlarging the pupils with eye drops is necessary. Enlarging the pupils is key because it allows the most effective vantage point to examine the complete lens for any cataract spots. If a cataract is found, then the PAM may be done. A potential acuity exam checks a patient’s possible vision without the cataract. The potential acuity exam is quite important in choosing an IOL if the patient opts to have cataract surgery.

What Can I Expect from Cataract Surgery?

It is quite normal to be nervous about cataract surgery, but our highly trained team will do their best to put you at ease. Most patients will receive some intravenous sedation by a board-certified anesthesiologist to relax. We will also use a local anesthetic in your eye to keep you comfortable and ensure your surgery is as easy for you as possible. Once numb, we will use a specialized device to break up the cataract and carefully remove it from the eye. Afterwards, we will insert the clear artificial lens, which will allow light to properly get to the retina for better vision. Many of our patients start seeing better within a few hours! We will prescribe medications, give you instructions on how to take care of your eye after surgery, and will schedule follow-up visits to ensure proper healing of the treated eye. Cataract surgery is usually performed one eye at a time, so we will assist in scheduling your second procedure at your convenience.

What Can I Expect After My Cataract Treatment?

Cataract surgery recovery can last anywhere from 4 – 6 weeks. Our team will review your aftercare instruction with you in detail. It is normal to experience itchy, sore eyes after your cataract surgery. A trusted friend or family member will need to drive you home after your surgery. You should refrain from driving over the next few days. Your ophthalmologist will give you a prescription for medicated eye drops to help prevent infection. It is vital that you do not apply any pressure to your eyes. You should avoid bending over, picking up heavy items, or rolling onto your eye while you sleep. Our team will provide you with an eye shield to wear at night.

Cataract Treatment FAQ

Is cataract surgery painful?
Patients are typically awake during cataract surgery, but they should feel little to no discomfort. Our team at Eye Specialists of Napa Valley will put you on intravenous sedation to ensure you remain at ease during your surgery. It is likely you will not remember the surgery. There may be some minor eye discomfort after your medications wear off, but this can be managed with over-the-counter pain medication.

How long does cataract surgery take?
The length of the surgery will vary from patient to patient. Cataract surgery can take anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour to complete.

Do I need to have my lens prescription updated after cataract surgery?
You will likely need to revisit your regular eye doctor to have your lens prescription updated after cataract surgery. We have several premium lens options available at our eye center that can help reduce or eliminate your need for corrective lenses following surgery. Talk to your cataract surgeon about Premium IOLs.

What happens if I don't get cataract surgery?
Cataracts are a progressive eye condition, and if you do not receive cataract surgery, then your vision will likely continue to deteriorate. Your ability to perform routine tasks such as driving, reading, and working may be impacted. It is important to see our cataract surgeons in Napa, CA, and receive treatment to ensure you continue seeing clearly for years to come.

See Clearly And Cataract-Free

If you are experiencing symptoms of cataracts, like blurred vision, difficulty driving at night, or seeing halos or starbursts around lights, consider visiting us at Eye Specialists of Napa Valley. Our skilled team of ophthalmologists will evaluate and see if you would benefit from eye cataract treatment. For more information about cataract surgery or to schedule a consultation with one of our board-certified ophthalmologists, contact our Napa, CA ophthalmology office today.

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*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.