Many cataract surgery patients have an underlying asymmetry in their cornea that is termed astigmatism. This asymmetry in the cornea can cause blurry vision, and it is commonly treated with either glasses or contact lenses. The following is a simulation of a typical visual change associated with cataract surgery and astigmatism correction. Every eye and every patient is unique, and these images may not exactly reflect your results.
A. Blurry vision with cataracts and astigmatism
B. Improved vision after removal of cataract, but still not clear due to astigmatism
C. Clear vision after removal of cataract and correction of astigmatism
At the Eye Treatment Center our skilled cataract surgeons offer two different ways to treat astigmatism during your cataract surgery so that you may be able to achieve clear distance vision without glasses:
1. Limbal Relaxing Incisions
This technique involves the use of incisions that re-shape the cornea’s contour. These incisions are precisely placed at the time of your cataract surgery, and they are more effective in patients that have a smaller amount of astigmatism. One drawback of this technique is that sometimes the effect of the incisions can wane over time.
2. Toric Intraocular Lens Implants
A toric lens is a specially designed lens that neutralizes the astigmatism in the cornea. The lens is placed in a precise orientation during the time of the cataract surgery based on your pre-operative corneal measurements in our office. The advantages of this lens are that it can correct larger amounts of astigmatism, and its astigmatism-correcting effect is usually more permanent in nature than Limbal Relaxing Incisions. Due to the possibility of a change in the alignment of the lens, a small percentage of patients may need a re-adjustment of the lens in the weeks following cataract surgery.