A cataract is a misting up of the natural lens, which sits just behind the pupil and helps to focus light on the retina. Cataract surgery involves replacing the misty natural lens with a perfect acrylic replacement that will last for decades. The focusing power of the new lens can be chosen to reduce dependence on glasses after surgery.
Modern cataract surgery is identical to Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE). Both operations involve replacing the natural lens with a new artificial lens The only difference is that cataract surgery is performed mainly to correct blur or light scatter caused by a misty natural lens; whereas RLE is performed to reduce the need for glasses or contact lenses.
Under the NICE guidelines for cataract surgery for adults (18+) the NHS will accept referrals, and arrange treatment for, patients whose cataracts have reached a suitably advanced stage. A consultation and the appropriate surgery, with monofocal lenses only, will generally be offered – subject to the current waiting list times. You will most likely still require reading glasses following monofocal lens replacement.
These waiting list times typically vary from three to six months, and up to a year in some areas, and apply for one eye at a time! With the effects of the Covid 19 extending to the cancellation / postponement of most non urgent surgery, this has sadly affected the waiting time for many people.
If cataracts are affecting your enjoyment of life, and you would like to consider an alternative to a waiting list, please do contact us by calling 07508 362 450 or click here to email us and we'll call you back.
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