Cataract surgery is a safe treatment with high rates of success. A patient may initially have blurry vision following the surgery, but it should clear in a few days. Like any other medical procedure, complications may lead to persistent blurry vision. What causes blurred vision after surgery? Should you be concerned?
What’s Normal and What’s Not?
Vision cloud is typical following cataract surgery. The eyes need time to recover and become used to the lens the doctor inserted. Everyone’s recovery from the surgery will happen at a different rate. Some patients may see clearly within 24 to 48 hours, while others may take several days before their vision clears.
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If a patient still has blurry eyes at least two weeks after the surgery, they should make an appointment with an ophthalmologist. The ophthalmologist will assess the condition of the patient’s eyes to rule out any potential complications.
What Surgery Complications Cause Blurry Vision?
Blurred vision is a frequent side effect of cataract treatment surgery which should last only a few days. The following five complications may cause a patient’s eyesight to remain hazy:
The immune system’s healthy response to any injury, such as removing the eye lens, is inflammation. Inflammation might make an individual uncomfortable and impair their vision momentarily.
Doctors prescribe medicines to help the inflammation go away as the eye heals. A patient should be able to see better within a few hours or days of surgery. If inflammation persists after surgery or worsens, one should consult a doctor.
2) Dry Eyes
Vision blur after surgery could also be because of dry eyes. One study found that cataract treatment surgery can make one more susceptible to dry eyes for the following reasons:
- Extended usage of antibiotic-steroid eye drops
- Interference of the tear film during the operation
- Production of fewer lubricants and tears due to the surgical incision
The remedy for dry eyes is using artificial tears. These eye drops can help lubricate the eyes to reduce vision blur. Preservative-free eye drops could be a better choice for those who use the drops more often or have preservative allergies. Consult an ophthalmologist when dry eye persists.
3) Posterior Capsular Opacification
Medics refer to posterior capsular opacification (PCO) as a secondary cataract. It is not a cataract. PCO develops when cells left over from cataract operation spread out over the capsule’s back surface. The cells thicken, forming a cloudy film. The eyesight becomes clouded or fuzzy as a result of this film.
PCO is a common complication following cataract removal surgery, affecting about 20% of individuals. It presents symptoms similar to those of cataracts. Treatment involves using a short and painless surgery known as YAG laser capsulotomy. This is a quick outpatient procedure.
4) Retinal Detachment
Retinal detachment happens when the eye retina separates itself from the eye. The detachment results in cloudy or shadowed vision. Some people report seeing floating objects or light flashes. It is an uncommon complication that usually affects people with existing eye issues.
A detached retina can be a serious problem resulting in permanent loss of vision if untreated. Patients should seek medical help immediately after sudden vision changes following the surgery.
5) Cystoids Macular Edema
Following cataract-removal surgery, the macula may swell, causing cystoid macular edema (CME). The macula is the retina’s center; swelling may lead to distorted and hazy vision. CME often manifests several weeks after surgery.
CME affects a low percentage of those who undergo cataract-removal surgery. Treatment often includes NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory) eye drops. The condition improves within several months most of the time.
Where Can You Get Cataract Surgery?
Cataract surgery is a safe treatment when performed by a qualified ophthalmologist. Many patients enjoy better eyesight following the surgery. Find a certified eye surgeon near you to begin your journey to better vision.