What Is The Difference Between Laser Cataract Surgery and Traditional Cataract Surgery?

Do you have a cataract that needs to be removed? When a cataract begins to interfere with your daily activities, it’s time to consider cataract surgery.

A cataract is a cloudy area that forms on your eye’s lens. They usually develop gradually as you age, occurring most frequently in those who are fifty-five and older. As they grow, symptoms worsen and can significantly affect your vision.

Fortunately, cataracts can be treated with surgery. However, not all cataract surgery is the same. 

There are two primary kinds: traditional surgery and surgery performed with a laser. Understanding both options will allow you to select the best one for you. 

Keep reading to learn the difference between laser cataract surgery and traditional cataract surgery!

What Is Traditional Cataract Surgery? 

Traditional cataract surgery has been around for decades. With this method, the surgeon uses a blade to create a small incision in the surface of your cornea. 

They insert a small instrument through the incision in order to create a circular opening. Next, they break up the lens, where the cataract is, using a probe that emits sound waves. The pieces are then removed. 

With your clouded lens gone, a new one is needed. The final step in cataract surgery is implanting an artificial lens. 

This is called an intraocular lens, or IOL. In most cases, stitches are not needed, as the eye will heal itself with time. 

What Is Laser Cataract Surgery?

Laser cataract surgery is also known as bladeless cataract surgery. Before the surgery begins, a camera creates a 3D map of your eye. 

The exact topography of the eye varies per person. The camera notes these differences and indicates where incisions are needed, as well as how deep and large they should be. 

With laser cataract surgery, the surgeon does not have to make an incision by hand. Instead, a laser is used to make the incision and for other necessary steps during the procedure. 

Once the cataract is removed, the process is similar to traditional surgery. An IOL is implanted and the eye is left to heal on its own.

Is Laser Cataract Surgery Safer Than Traditional? 

Cataract surgery is one of the most common and safest procedures in existence. This is true whether you elect to get laser cataract surgery or traditional cataract surgery. 

However, laser cataract surgery is even more precise and, as a result, safer than traditional cataract surgery. The addition of laser technology has been an incredibly significant advancement in the field of modern cataract surgery. 

When technology is more precise, it increases the degree of accuracy. The mapping of your eye provides in-depth information about its tiny structures. 

This dramatically increases precision, making the procedure even safer.

Are There Other Benefits to Laser Cataract Surgery?

In addition to increased precision, laser cataract surgery comes with a few other benefits that make it an ideal option for many patients. 

Because of these, laser cataract surgery has a near-perfect satisfaction rate. With both types of surgery, the recovery period is relatively brief. 

Most patients can return to their normal activities within a day or two. However, many laser cataract surgery patients experience a shorter recovery period. 

Because the laser is used to soften the cataract before removal, there is less inflammation for quicker healing. Laser cataract surgery also often means less time in the surgery chair. 

The advanced technology allows your cataract surgeon to make more accurate incisions faster. For some people, lasers can provide more effective correction than is possible with traditional cataract surgery. 

Should I Choose Laser Cataract Surgery?

If you want to improve your vision beyond just removing your cataract, laser cataract surgery can support your best outcome. The surgeon can implant a premium IOL that allows you to see clearly from multiple distances. 

Using the ocular map created before surgery, they can place this lens more precisely. Many patients opt for a premium lens because they want to rely less on glasses. 

Thanks to our state-of-the-art ORA System® with VerifEye®+ Technology, more of our patients are able to achieve visual freedom. Laser cataract surgery is a great option for those with astigmatism. 

During your cataract surgery, your eye doctor can be strategic when deciding where to place the initial incision in order to give you the best vision outcome. When medically necessary, traditional cataract surgery is covered by insurance. 

Laser cataract surgery is usually considered an out-of-pocket expense. Not everyone qualifies for laser cataract surgery. 

Patients should be in good general health and not be taking certain medications. They should also have realistic expectations for the outcome of the procedure. 

If you need cataract surgery, your eye doctor can discuss your options further and help you to determine the best choice for you. Don’t let a cataract cloud your days any longer!

Do you want to learn more about laser cataract surgery? Schedule an appointment at Eye Associates of Tallahassee in Tallahassee, FL, today!

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