• Seeing Clearly with Cataract Surgery

    Eye Care

    March 12, 2019

    "Now I see better in my right  eye than my left eye,” says Donna Bates, 58, who recently had cataract surgery on her right eye performed by Kamran Chaudhri, MD, a Bassett Healthcare Network ophthalmologist.

    Cataract care and surgery is fairly common, but in Bates’ case the presentation of the cataract was unusual in its sudden occurrence.

    The nightmare before Christmas

    “I woke up Dec. 24, 2017, and everything was blurry in my right eye,” says Bates, who lives in Bainbridge. “I couldn’t see anything.”

    Despite encouragement from her primary care provider to see an

    eye specialist right away and a card with the name of the health care insurance navigator on it—since she had no health insurance—Bates hesitated to seek care. She put an eye patch on (“my grandson called me a pirate”) and went about her life for nearly another year. She eventually decided to enroll in health insurance and made an appointment.

    “I didn’t know how much improvement she would get from having cataract surgery, as the cataract was very advanced by the time she saw me,” says Dr. Chaudhri. “But after a smooth recovery for Ms. Bates, we’re both very pleased with the result.”

    Treatment - In time

    On Dec. 10, 2018, Bates’ surgery was performed and it was a success. Her vision was restored, and she was able to throw the eye patch away. “I was nervous at first to have the surgery, but everybody was great, from the nurse to the anesthesiologist; and Dr. Chaudhri—he’s just wonderful. I’m so glad I did it.”

    A closer look at cataract surgery

     Cataract surgery is a procedure to remove the lens in your eye when it becomes clouded and affects your vision. The natural lens is replaced with an artificial lens that requires no care and significantly improves vision. Cataract surgery is performed by an eye doctor (ophthalmologist) on an outpatient basis, which meansyou don’t have to stay in the hospital after the surgery. The surgery takes about an hour and can be done using ultrasound energy or laser-assisted technology to remove the cloudy lens. Cataract removal surgery is one of the most frequently performed surgical procedures in the world.