Cataracts and Cataract Surgery in Corpus Christi
A native Corpus Christian, Dr. Spengler graduated from Mary Carroll High School. He attended Texas A&M University followed by the University of Texas Medical School at Houston.
Dr. Spengler is the primary ophthalmologist/surgeon at Berkeley Eye Center- Corpus Christi.
Same Day Appointments Are Available!
What are Cataracts?
More than fifty percent of people over the age of 60 (and a large percentage of those younger) have vision that is impaired by cataracts. Cataracts are so common that almost everyone will eventually develop a cataract. Cataract formations occur at different rates and can affect one or both eyes.
A cataract is a progressive clouding of the natural lens inside your eye that interferes with light passing through to the retina. Aging and other factors cause proteins in the eye’s lens to clump together forming these cloudy areas. Early changes may not disturb vision, but over time cataracts typically cause vision to seem blurred or fuzzy and may result in sensitivity to light. Cataract patients describe the feeling as if they’re looking through a waterfall or a piece of wax paper.
Symptoms of Cataracts:
- Decreasing vision with age
- Blurred or double vision
- Seeing halos around bright lights
- Difficulty seeing at night
- Vision that worsens in sunlight
- Difficulty distinguishing colors
- Poor depth perception
- Frequent prescription changes for glasses
- Difficulty reading
Your eye doctor can perform a contrast sensitivity test that will determine to what extent your vision has been affected by a cataract. However, a cataract should typically be treated when decreased vision is affecting your daily life.
Cataract surgery is for those who:
- Believe that their quality of life has been impaired by poor vision
- Have been diagnosed with cataracts
- Have no health issues affecting their eyes
Once cataracts form, the only one way to achieve clear vision again is through cataract surgery. Modern-day cataract removal and lens implantation is one of the safest, most common, and most effective surgical procedures performed today. The outpatient procedure takes only a few minutes, and in fact, it’s not unusual for patients to enjoy improved vision within hours of their procedure.
When a cataract is removed, an intraocular lens implant (IOL) is used to replace the cloudy human lens. There are several lens options available to fit your needs and lifestyle.
- Standard Monofocal IOL – designed with one focal point to improve the patient’s distance vision after the cataract is removed. With a standard monofocal IOL, it is not uncommon for a patient to need glasses to “fine tune” distance vision and either a bifocal or reading glasses for near vision.
- Multifocal IOL – provides correction for both distance and near vision reducing or eliminating the need for glasses. With this advanced lens technology, 4 out of 5 patients in the supporting FDA clinical study reported never needing to wear glasses after surgery in both eyes.
- Toric IOL– designed to correct both a cataract and preexisting astigmatism in one procedure. A Toric IOL provides quality distance vision and offers a decreased dependency on glasses compared to a standard monofocal lens.
The day of your surgery, you will arrive at the surgery center approximately one hour early. After checking in, you may be offered a sedative to help you relax. The staff will then prepare you for surgery by cleaning and applying a sterile drape around your eye. Eye drops or a local anesthetic will be used to numb your eyes. When your eye is completely numb, an eyelid holder will be placed between your eyelids to keep you from blinking during the procedure.
Removing a cataract is performed using a process called phacoemulsification. The surgeon will make a very small incision and will use a tiny ultrasonic probe to break up the cataract into microscopic particles using high-energy sound waves. The cataract particles will be gently suctioned away.
Once the entire cataract has been removed, the surgeon will implant a folded intra-ocular lens (IOL) through the incision, which will unfold and lock into place. The small incision is self-sealing and typically does not require stitches.
After surgery, you will return home and relax. Each patient heals somewhat differently, but many patients notice improvement in their vision almost immediately. In most cases, patients return to their daily activities within a day or two following their procedure.
How will I see after cataract surgery?
The type of lens implant you choose largely determines how you will see after surgery. We use a Lifestyle Questionnaire to determine which lens is the best option for your lifestyle.