At birth, the lens of the human eye is clear and soft, but with age, the lens becomes increasingly cloudy and hardened. As this natural process progresses, it may cause visual symptoms such as blurred vision, glare, or reduced clarity. A cataract is the medical word for the lens of the eye when it has become cloudy. Almost everyone eventually develops a cataract with age. However, the formation of a cataract can occur more quickly with sunlight exposure, certain medications, eye injury, or medical diseases such as diabetes.
Eventually, however, the cataract becomes cloudy enough to cause visual symptoms that cannot be corrected with glasses alone. At this point, cataract surgery is the only option to improve the quality of the vision. In most situations, cataract surgery is an elective surgery, and the goal of the surgery is to improve the quality of vision. There are some rare situations, however, where the cataract must be removed for the health of the eye. At the time of surgery, the natural lens is removed with a technique called phacoemulsification that utilizes ultrasound energy, and an intraocular lens (IOL) is then placed into the eye. The IOL can stay inside the eye forever. Cataract surgery for most patients can be done with mild sedation as a same-day surgery. Dr. Lawrence Perlmutter and Dr. David Perlmutter have performed over 18,000 cataract surgeries combined.
Our goal is custom cataract surgery that fits your lifestyle and your needs. We therefore offer expertise in basic single vision lenses, as well as premium IOLs (Toric, Tecnis Symfony extended depth of focus, and Multifocal) to reduce dependency on glasses. For patients interested in femtosecond laser-assisted cataract surgery, Dr. David Perlmutter is the only surgeon in the Capital Region who trained in femtosecond laser-assisted cataract surgery on the Catalys femtosecond laser as part of his ophthalmology residency at the internationally-acclaimed Wills Eye Hospital. Dr. Perlmutter was named one of the “rising stars” in ophthalmology by the World Ophthalmology Congress, and he has lectured internationally on femtosecond laser-assisted cataract surgery.
Not all patients are candidates for all IOL types. Using cutting-edge technology and a thorough complete eye exam, each eye is evaluated carefully to provide the best possible care. Based on your needs and the individual nature of your eyes, we can recommend an IOL customized for you.
Types of Intraocular Lenses include:
- Basic single vision IOL: The lens can improve vision at a single distance, but most patients generally require glasses for both near and distance vision after surgery
- Astigmatism-correcting (Toric) IOL: The lens corrects astigmatism, which occurs when the front surface of the eye, called the cornea, is not roundly shaped. Astigmatism-correcting IOLs decrease the dependence on glasses for either near or distance vision, but not for both. We utilize both the AcrySof and Tecnis toric IOLs for astigmatism correction.
- Tecnis Symfony Extended Depth of Focus Lens: The Tecnis Symfony Lens, FDA-approved in August 2016, comes in standard and astigmatism-correcting models. It can improve vision at distance and allow for some near vision in patients with less incidence of glare and halos.
- Presbyopia-correcting (Multifocal) IOL: The lens can improve distance vision and at the same time decrease dependence on glasses for near vision. In some patients, the lens causes glare and halos, which most often decrease with time. There are numerous multifocal IOLs available, but for good candidates, we most often implant the Tecnis Multifocal IOL.