Preparation and Recovery of Cataract Surgery

The purpose of cataract surgery is to remove the lens of the eye that no longer focuses correctly, replacing it with an artificial one so that you can see without a cloudy image. This is usually an outpatient procedure with little to no side effects. Recovery time is typically about a week or two before the eye patch can be removed.

Preparing For Surgery

There is often little preparation needed for cataract surgery Nashville TN doctors perform. Before determining whether you are a candidate or not, your doctor will perform a series of tests to see if there is a cataract present and to see how big the cataract is if one is in the eye. The size and the shape of the eye are measured so that the best artificial lens can be used. You usually won’t be able to eat anything the night before surgery because you will be sedated but not asleep. You will be in a state where you’re awake because your doctor will need to determine whether the artificial lens will allow you to see or not.

Surgery is often completed in less than an hour as long as there are no complications. Most doctors won’t do both eyes at the same time but will make an appointment for a future surgical appointment if there is a cataract in both eyes. A laser is often used to get through the front of the eye in order to reach the cataract. The cataract is then broken up and removed in small pieces before the artificial lens is placed. Someone will need to drive you home because it will be difficult to see and because of the sedation medications that are given before the surgery.

Side Effects

Although the side effects are minimal to non-existent for most patients, there are a few that could occur, normally within about 24 hours after surgery. The most common side effect is bleeding from the incision site. You should also look for any swelling or signs of an infection, such as redness or a developing fever. Retinal detachment is one of the severe side effects that could occur but is likely not to happen. This condition involves the retina breaking away from the tissue at the back of your eye. If there is any pressure in the eye, then you might want to contact your doctor for an examination just to see if there are any issues that need to be addressed. If at any time you feel the artificial lens loosen, then you need to contact your doctor as this could lead to other impacts in the eye.


Spend the first few days after surgery resting. You might feel an itching sensation in your eye, and there will likely be soreness. However, this shouldn’t be anything too severe and should ease when you take pain medications. You need to use eye drops that are given by your doctor to prevent any kind of infection and to keep the eye from drying out. Most people are healed within about eight weeks.