Clear Thinking – Cataract Surgery is Safer and More Effective Than Ever

 
 

Cataracts are extremely common, so there’s a good chance that you or someone you know will require surgery to correct them. 

With your vision health in mind, we recently sat with Dr. Farrell Tyson—a board-certified ophthalmologist with an elite practice in southwest Florida—who has performed thousands of cataract surgeries over the years. During our conversation, Dr. Tyson shared his insight on the symptoms and solutions for this common disorder.

Let’s start with the basics—What are cataracts? A cataract is a condition that results from the buildup of protein in the eye lens. Because of the protein buildup, light can’t pass through the lens, which results in changes of vision. 

Dr. Tyson says cloudy, blurry or foggy vision are the most frequent changes people will notice, but there are other symptoms, too:

  • Progressive nearsightedness

  • Changes in perception of color

  • Glare problems driving at night (from headlights)

  • Glare problems during the day (from sunlight)

  • Double vision

  • Needing more light to read

What causes cataracts? “At our office, we see thousands of cataract patients every year, and many of them want to know if they could have done something different to prevent the cataracts,” Dr. Tyson explains. Unfortunately, the answer is “Probably not”.

Some studies show that diabetes and smoking may bring on cataracts. Others express that reducing UV exposure by wearing sunglasses can help. Diet, too, may play a role. Still, even if these steps did reduce your risk of developing cataracts—and the evidence isn’t conclusive—they cannot treat them. The only treatment for cataracts is surgery.

As one of the busiest cataract surgeons in southwest Florida, Dr. Tyson has performed cataract surgery thousands of times during his career. For many years, he completed the surgery exclusively using what is referred to as “the traditional method”. With this approach, the surgeon manually guides a surgical blade to create several small incisions in the eye. The doctor then uses these pathways to break up the bad lens, so it can be suctioned out. Once the bad lens is removed, the surgeon inserts a new lens into the eye.

While the traditional method has been effective for decades, technology has progressed to bring big improvements to the procedure. The biggest enhancements have come in the form of laser-assisted surgical technology.

 
 

“In my opinion, laser-assisted cataract surgery is far and away the best choice for the procedure,” Dr. Tyson asserts. He further states that the LENSAR™ Laser System is his preferred choice because it offers patients the safest and most-effective cataract removal. 

 
 

“In my opinion, laser-assisted cataract surgery is far and away the best choice for the procedure,” Dr. Tyson asserts. He further states that the LENSAR™ Laser System is his preferred choice because it offers patients the safest and most-effective cataract removal. 

“The LENSAR system is specifically designed for cataract surgery and is so advanced that it gives the surgeon a fully automated analysis of the cornea and lens surfaces along with an advanced femtosecond laser,” he explains. “Working together, these systems deliver precise laser pulse placement and surgical incisions that can’t be matched by manual techniques. And it’s all done with a reconstructed, personalized 3-D view of the patient’s eye.”

Still, even with these enhancements and improved results, patients must consider the qualifications of the doctor they select to perform the cataract surgery. Dr. Tyson recommends working only with a board-certified doctor who has extensive training and experience. “It’s important to recognize that laser-assisted cataract surgery—although a drastic improvement over the traditional approach—is still surgery,” he says. “It requires a highly skilled practitioner to achieve the safest and best outcome.”

 

ABOUT THE EXPERT

Farrell C. Tyson, MD

Eye Surgery
Vision Correction

TysonEye.com