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Advanced Cataract Treatment Options

When it comes to the most advanced technique in cataract surgery, the physicians at OMNI Eye Specialists are among the most experienced eye care professionals in the greater Baltimore region, providing you with a variety of visual options to fit your lifestyle and individual eye care needs. Our well-trained staff and surgical coordinators will work closely with you to answer all of your questions and walk you step-by-step through the cataract surgery process, ensuring the most personal care and service.

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Symptoms of a Cataract

If you experience one or more of the following symptoms, you may need to be evaluated by an OMNI Eye specialist for cataracts:

  • Cloudy or blurred vision
  • Seeing “halos” around bright lights
  • Impaired night vision
  • Sensitivity to light or glare from bright light
  • Increasing difficulty with vision at night
  • Double vision, especially in one eye
  • Colors appear to be faded

Some people may not notice the blurred vision or cloudiness if the cataract affects only a small portion of the lens. However, as a cataract increases in size, cloudiness and blurred vision becomes more apparent. If you experience any changes in your vision, it’s important to see a specialist for a comprehensive eye exam.

How is Cataract Surgery Performed?

Laser Cataract Refractive Surgery

OMNI Eye Specialists is proud to be one of the first Maryland practices to offer Femtosecond Laser Cataract Refractive Surgery.

Ivan H. Garcia, M.D.provides patients with this premium cataract surgery experience utilizing the advanced CATALYS® Precision Laser System.

Designed specifically for laser cataract surgery, we are very pleased to be utilizing this technology for our patients.

The CATALYS Precision Laser System is indicated for use in patients undergoing cataract surgery for removal of the crystalline lens. Intended uses in cataract surgery include anterior capsulotomy, phacofragmentation, and the creation of single plane and multi-plane arc cuts/incisions in the cornea,
each of which may be performed either individually or consecutively during the same procedures.

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Key Benefits for Patients

  • Customization with 3D Imaging, like a fingerprint, every eye has a unique size and shape.
  • Prior to treatment, the CATALYS Laser images your eye and makes a precise 3D map of relevant structures.
  • Enables your surgeon to create a tailored treatment plan that is uniquely customized for your eye.

Laser Protection

OMNI doctors can use the CATALYS Laser to create laser precise incisions, including circular opening in the lens capsule to access and remove the cataract. This precise incision helps your surgeon place the new artificial lens exactly where intended.

Many of the steps of cataract surgery that are traditionally performed using handheld instruments can now be completed using the precision of a laser.  The CATALYS Precision Laser System – developed in the heart of Silicon Valley – is designed specifically for laser cataract surgery.  Thousands of patients have been treated with the CATALYS Laser.

Before Your Surgery

Before your surgery, our team will discuss various types of lens implants with you. How you see after surgery will depend on the type of lens implant used. It is vital that you discuss your lifestyle and vision expectations so that we can determine the right premium lens implant for you.

During Your Surgery

Cataract surgery is relatively “patient-friendly.” It is usually performed as an outpatient procedure requiring only a few minutes. “Phacoemulsification” is the microsurgical technique used. It requires a tiny incision and breaks up the cataract with ultrasound waves.

  • Eye drops are applied for anesthesia.
  • The surgeon makes an incision and uses ultrasound waves to break up the hard, yellow proteins that form the cataract, leaving the lens membrane in place.
  • Next, a soft, flexible synthetic Intraocular Lens (IOL) is inserted into the lens capsule of the eye.
  • The lens is a permanent fixture that helps your eye to focus. You will not be able to feel or sense the implanted lens in any way.

Cataract Surgery. Three eye balls in a row. The first eye has a clouded lens. The second and third each show the Intraocular lens (IOL) implanted in place.

After Your Surgery

Because there are no needles or injections, only a tiny incision, stitches and an eye patch are not required after the surgery. In most cases, the incision is so small that the eye heals rapidly, with little or no discomfort, and the patient experiences a quick visual recovery. Patients can typically return to normal activities within a few days. The following video describes some symptoms patients may experience directly after their cataract surgery.

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Types of Intraocular Lenses (IOL)

Our team will work with you to decide when your cataracts must be removed and which type of IOL is best for your visual needs. OMNI Eye Specialists offers several types of lenses, each designed for a specific corrective function.

During the first 25 years that lens implants were used for vision correction, the goal was to correct distance or far vision as best as possible (single-focus). The very latest in premium multifocal and toric lenses can improve vision for various distances all at once. This typically means not having to wear glasses for many activities following your procedure and regaining your important reading vision.

  • Extended Depth of Focus (EDOF) and Toric EDOF Lenses: The AcrySof™ IQ Vivity™ lens is the latest EDOF IOL (implant) that provides excellent distance and intermediate vision, while minimizing halos and glare. This exceptional lens is also available in a EDOF Toric version and is considered one of the most advanced EDOF intraocular lenses available in the world.
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  • Multifocal and Toric Multifocal Lenses: Designed to give patients the best distance and near vision with less dependence on glasses after surgery. Select Eye Care uses the AcrySof® IQ PanOptix® Trifocal Lens, which is the first and only trifocal lens available in the United States. Over 100 million lenses and counting have been implanted. And 99% of people surveyed with the PanOptix Lens would choose the same lens again. Compared to the older "monofocal" intraocular lenses (IOLs), the AcrySof® IQ PanOptix®  provides an extended depth of focus, producing enhanced near and intermediate vision to reverse the effects of presbyopia. The PanOptix Lens enhances quality as well as range, so your vision will be as sharp and vivid as it is complete. We will discuss your day, night and reading vision expectations following surgery.
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  • Toric Lens (Astigmatism): An astigmatism correcting implant which addresses corneal astigmatism so that distance vision is completely corrected after cataract surgery without glasses. With a traditional implant in patients who have astigmatism, glasses are still necessary to see at all distances. This lens is only necessary for individuals with a high level of astigmatism.
  • Single-Focus Lens (Basic): The single-focus lens is inexpensive and effective in clearing vision. If you receive a single-focus lens, the focus will be set for distance and you will regain your ability to see objects that are far away. After surgery, patients will likely need to wear corrective lenses, especially for activities like reading and driving.

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What to Expect the Day Of Your Cataract Surgery

Thanks to advancements in cataract surgery and technology, the common surgical procedure is performed on an outpatient basis at one of our affiliated surgery centers under local or topical anesthesia. Our staff makes every effort to ensure your comfort at all times.

You will be asked to arrive in the office one hour before the surgery to prepare for the procedure, which typically takes about 30 to 45 minutes. The procedure to remove the cataract and place one of the advanced intraocular lenses available to our patients is performed through a very small incision that enables your eye to heal quickly with little or no discomfort.

Following your surgery, the OMNI Eye staff will monitor your recovery closely, ensuring your comfort for about one hour before you can return home. A member of our staff will follow up with you to answer any questions and ensure your optimal recovery. Vision is typically restored immediately following the surgery and continues to improve over the days and weeks following the procedure.

Affordability

Medicare and most insurance plans cover the costs for traditional cataract surgery with single-focus lenses. There is an additional out-of-pocket cost for laser assisted cataract surgery, as well as extended depth of focus, multifocal and toric lenses. Patients usually find the out-of-pocket expense is worth it for having laser technology used in their surgery and the added precision.

Financing is also available for a portion of the premium lens charge. Our staff will review all of this information with you before your surgery.

We offer several payment options to suit your needs:

  • Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA): You can save up to 30% by using tax-free dollars to pay for your cataract surgery. Many employers offer an FSA or Health Savings Account.
  • Financing: OMNI Eye Specialists is pleased to offer up to 6-12 months’ special financing for vision correction procedures, such as cataract surgery, with approved credit through CareCredit.
  • Credit Cards: Many patients opt to pay for their procedure using a personal credit card. This may be a good option, especially if you have a card that carries a low interest rate or offers points and other rewards. We accept all major credit cards, as well as CareCredit.

Contact our team at OMNI Eye Specialists about the best financing options for you.

Quick Cataract FAQs

What is a Cataract?

A cataract is a clouding of the lens in the eye that affects vision. Most cataracts are age-related. By age 80, more than half of all Americans have either a cataract or have had cataract surgery. A cataract can occur in either or both eyes. It cannot be spread from one eye to the other.

What is the Lens?

The lens is the clear part of the eye that helps to focus light or an image on the retina. The retina is the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye. In a normal eye, light passes through the transparent lens to the retina. Once it reaches the retina, light is changed into nerve signals that are sent to the brain.

The lens must be clear for the retina to receive a sharp image. If the lens is cloudy from a cataract, the image you see will be blurred.

Are There Different Types of Cataracts?

Yes. Although most cataracts are related to aging, there are other types of cataracts:

  • Secondary cataract - Cataracts can form after surgery with other eye problems such as glaucoma. Cataracts can also develop in people who have other health problems, such as diabetes. Cataracts are sometimes linked to steroid use.
  • Traumatic cataract - Cataracts can develop after an eye injury, sometimes years later.
  • Congenital cataract - Some babies are born with cataracts or develop them in childhood, often in both eyes. These cataracts may be so small that they do not affect vision. If they do, the lenses may need to be removed.
  • Radiation cataract - Cataracts can develop after exposure to some types of radiation.

Is Cataract Surgery Effective?

Yes! Many patients report vision that is even better than before they developed cataracts. Modern cataract surgery is considered one of the most effective medical procedures used today. 

Does Insurance Cover Cataract Surgery?

Yes. Medicare and most insurance plans cover approved cataract surgeries. There is an additional charge for laser assisted cataract surgery and advanced technology lenses. Our staff will review all of this information with you.

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