A photo of a human eye - catarct

What to expect when you have treatment for cataracts – Your questions answered

A cataract is the clouding of the lens which causes blurred vision and glare. While cataract surgery is the most common operation performed in the UK, it can still be a source of uncertainty for patients. To help put your mind at ease, we have put together the following information, which will answer some of the most common questions about cataract treatment, aftercare and recovery. However it is important to note that this information does not replace the individualised information that would be provided by a specialist consultant ophthalmic surgeon.

I didn’t know that I had a cataract until my optician told me – is that normal?

Yes, it can be normal. At first, you might not be aware that a cataract is developing and, initially, it may not cause problems with your vision. Generally, as a cataract develops over time, you start to experience blurring of vision. In most cases, eyes with a cataract look normal but, if the cataract is advanced, your pupil may no longer look black and can look cloudy or white.

Can anything be done to stop my cataract worsening?

No. There is no known method of preventing cataracts

When should I have my cataract treated?

When the cataract progresses to the point that it is interfering with daily activities or lifestyle, even when using up-to-date glasses, then cataract surgery would be the next step. Modern surgery is highly successful for the vast majority of patients, but as with all surgery there are rare risks which your consultant will discuss with you.

What happens during cataract surgery?

Cataract surgery involves an operation to remove the cloudy lens and replace it with a clear artificial replacement. This treatment is quick, taking between 15-30 minutes, and can greatly improve vision.

Is cataract surgery painful?

Anaesthetising eye drops combined with mild sedatives should make surgery as painless as possible.

After surgery, it is normal to experience mild irritation or grittiness in and around your eye.

How effective is cataract surgery?

In the absence of eye co-morbidities, almost all patients achieve driving standard or better vision after cataract surgery.

Will I have to stay in hospital?

No you will have your operation and be discharged on the same day.

Following surgery, you should be able to:
  • See things in focus (although glasses may be needed)
  • Look at lights without experiencing glare
  • Tell the difference between colours more easily
How long will I take to recover?
  • Most patients are able to go home on the same day
  • The majority of patients can resume physical activity within a day or two
  • You should be able to return to work a few days after your operation, depending on your occupation.
Why choose Moorfields Private?

Moorfields Private has a worldwide reputation for providing the highest quality treatment and care for patients seeking private cataract-surgery.

Vincenzo Maurino – Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon & Cataract Service Director says;

“All Moorfields Private surgeons hold accredited consultant positions at Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, working at the very top of their profession. We pride ourselves on offering a service with complete continuity of care. At each visit, you will see your consultant surgeon who will supervise every aspect of your care from start to finish and personally perform your cataract procedure. We are here for you through your entire treatment journey.”

Vincenzo, Maurino

Written in association with

Vincenzo Maurino

Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon & Cataract Service Director

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