Is it better to have cataract surgery early?

Is it better to have cataract surgery early?

It is always better to have cataracts removed while they are immature, since doing so will reduce the length of surgery as well as the recovery time. However, it’s never too late to have cataracts taken out. The sooner cataracts are removed after diagnosis, the less likely that the significant visual impairment associated with very mature (hyper-mature) cataracts will manifest. Yet, some people believe that since waiting to have cataract surgery won’t harm most individuals, it is good to take time to consider the options. In fact, some people consider that if your vision is still fairly decent, you may not need cataract surgery for many years, if ever.

Cataract Senior woman's eye closeup

Can you wait too long to have cataracts removed?

Cataracts can become “hyper-mature”, which makes them more difficult to remove. In some cases, this can cause complications during surgery. Usually, the best results for cataract surgery occur when surgery is performed soon after vision problems develop, whether it is due to age, disease, or injury.

When should you have cataracts removed?

As soon as you experience symptoms such as blurred vision, sensitivity to light, double vision, difficulty seeing or driving at night, you experience a loss in depth perception, or muting or fading of colors occurs, you should visit an ophthalmologist to have your vision assessed by an expert. When considering visiting an eye doctor, ask yourself these questions:

  • Can I see clearly to safely drive?
  • Can I see the road and road signs at night?
  • Do bright lights make it more difficult to see at night?
  • Do I need more light to read or do other close work?
  • Do the lights from the television or my computer bother my eyes?
  • Has it become difficult to perform normal tasks such as yard work, sewing, cooking, climbing stairs or seeing medication labels clearly?

You should also consider cataract surgery when a cataract interferes with the treatment of another eye problem. For instance, if a cataract makes it difficult for your eye doctor to examine the back of your eye to treat or keep an eye on other eye problems, such as age-related macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy, your doctor may advise you to have cataract surgery.

Contact us today at (843) 553-2477 to schedule an appointment.