Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ) - Cataract and S-MICS

Friday, November 28, 2008

Q. What is cataract?
A. Cataract is opacity of the clear, natural lens inside the eye generally due to progression of age. Just like graying of hair, one gets cataract with age. When this lens becomes opaque with ageing it does not permit light to reach the retina causing poor visibility, known as cataract.
A cataract can occur in either or both eyes and is seen in all if we live long enough.

Q. What are the symptoms in patients suffering from cataract?
A. Cataract causes gradual, progressive, painless decrease in clarity of vision. Typically people complain of blurred vision, difficulty in driving, not being able to read for long and frequent change of spectacle power. Some may experience glare while looking at light and even double vision or Diplopia.
If untreated this may lead to total blindness also.

Q. What are the causes of cataract?
A. Most common cause of cataract is ageing. Other risk factors include, diabetes, smoking, alcohol abuse and environmental factors such as prolonged exposure to sunlight

Q. How to prevent cataract?
A. Diet, yoga, exercise or even medications can not prevent age related cataract. Good control of diabetes and protection from UV rays can delay the onset of cataract.

Q. What are the treatment options for cataract?
A. The only scientific proven treatment is surgical removal of the natural lens, which has turned opaque and replaced with an artificial lens implant such as, Akreos AO MIL. No medicine or exercises are scientifically proven to cure cataract till date.

Q. What are the surgical options available?
A. Earlier cataract surgery was performed with an incision of 12 mm which required stitches and patching of eye. Over the last few years with the advent of a technique called Phacoemulsification or Phaco, the cut in eye had been reduced to the incision size of 2.8 mm - 3.4 mm. This (Phaco) has been the current popular trend for cataract surgery worldwide.
Keeping in line with the surgical procedure trends where cut size is being reduced day by day, S-MICS ( Stellaris - Microincision Cataract Surgery ) with its global break-through technology takes it a step further by reducing the incision size to a mere of 1.5 mm - 1.8 mm.

Q. What are specific advantages of S-MICS?
A. The specific advantages of S-MICS over Standard Phocoemulsification , which is the present popular method of cataract surgery are:

  • S-MICS requires a smaller incision size ( 1.6 mm - 1.8 mm ), which is 50 percent smaller than the standard Phaco which entails an incision size of 2.8 mm - 3.4 mm.
  • A smaller incision size means a smaller wound that heals faster leading to quicker vision recovery and lesser chances of infections.
  • Faster healing means minimal restrictions and an early return to normal life.
  • Smaller incision includes little change to the original shape of the eye, resulting in lower chances of developing surgery-induced astigmatism ( cylindrical power ) and lesser requirement of postoperative spectacles.
  • S-MICS helps in enhanced quality of postoperative vision due to improved Intra Ocular Lenses ( IOLs ) such as Akreos AO MIL, which uses advanced optics technology leading to superior vision contrast.
Q. What are the lens options available?
A. There are two basic types of lenses, non-foldable and foldabel , with the former having restricted usage. Foldable lenses are those which require smaller incisions and open after insertion into the eye and they are of two types, monofocals and multifocals. Among the monofocals, Zero Abberation lenses like, Akreos AO MIL, are most technically advanced and provide better visual outcome with better contrast and depth of vision.

Q. Is cataract surgery safe?
A. Any procedure or surgery in the medical field may have risks and benefits. Fortunatlely, due to improved technology like Stellaris, procedures like S-MICS and skills of the doctors, cataract is one of the top rated surgeries with regard to excellent surgical results.
Cataract surgery is the most performed surgery in the world even more than dental extraction procedure. This is one surgery with maximum gratifying results.

Q. Is cataract surgery painful?
A. No this surgery is relatively painless and last for a few minutes only. It does not even require painful injections around the eye in majority of cases and can be performed by simply putting one or two eye drops a few minutes prior to the surgery to numb the eye.

Q. How soon can I rejoin my office after cataract surgery?
A. The visual recovery in a cataract surgery can vary from a patient to patient and especially by the kind of procedure performed. In a standard cataract surgery the patient may take a week or two to recover where as a standard Phaco surgery may take 3 to 4 days before the patient may feel fit to resume his daily routine, but with S-MICS the patient may even drive back home if he feels up to it.

Q. Which is the good time of a year to undertake cataract surgery?
A. Cataract surgery can be done at any time of the year and
S-MICS technology has now made it even more safe.

Q. I am wearing -8.0 specatacle power and diagnosed with cataract, will I require spectacles after surgery?
A. Using modern technology like
S-MICS, we can get rid of this -8.0 power and make the patient see without glasses, except for reading purposes.

Q. I am diabetic and am afraid of wound healing and infections. What is the surgical option for me?
A. Thanks to modern day technology using
S-MICS technique, cataract surgery can be performed with 1.8mm incision for quicker healing thereby making it safer than the current 3.2mm Phaco for diabetic patients.

Q. What are the usual precautions after cataract surgery?
A. With modern techniques like
S-MICS, the restrictions are minimal. They are limited to avoiding rubbing the operated eye, dusty and polluted places and contact of the eye with water for a week to ten days, depending on the surgical procedure used and use of dark protective glasses when going outdoors.
Diabetic patients should maintain their blood sugar after the surgery. One can resume their normal daily activities whenever one feels comfortable.


Natural Vision Improvement Tips

Since eyes are the most delicate and the most important sensory organs of the human body, we need to be extra careful. Here are some simple tips for a healthy eye that improves the natural vision.

Natural Vision Improvement Tips:

1. Always take medication on the advice of a medical practitioner and never take medication off the shelf as advised by pharmacists.

2. Weak eye sight in children should not be ignored and prescribed spectacles should be worn; overlooking this can lead to Amblyopia (Visual impairment without apparent organic pathology ) / Lazy Eye and irreversible loss to vision

3. Contact lens users should maintain strict hygiene. They should never overuse and should discard their old pair of contacts as prescribed by the manufacturer.

4. Daily diet should contain fresh fruits and vegetables to ensure healthy eyesight life long.

5. The recent trend of using anti oxidants for prevention of age related diseases is showing encouraging results among elderly and can be taken in consultation with an eye specialist.

6. Staring into a computer screen over long durations in air conditioned atmosphere, can lead to excessive strain on eyes and cause dryness of the eyes. To prevent the same, regulate the duration of computer usage.


Eye Care - Take Care of Your Eyes

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Eye injuries among kids is more common than we think.What’s the most boring thing you’ve ever heard? It’s probably ‘don’t sit so close to the television’ from an irate grown up. Next time, before you feign deafness, think. Television, from too close, doesn’t do our peepers any good.

Protect your eye

“India has among the highest rates of blindness in the world,” says Dr. Mohan Rajan. “Eye injuries among children are more common than we think.”
Injuries when playing, cracker related injuries, scratches that might lead to internal eye bleeds — our eyes are more prone to danger than ever.
“Presentation and detection of such problems as early as possible is important. The treatment is then more effective.” he says.

Contact lenses for children over 12 is a good idea. Disposable ones are the best and aren’t too expensive. Wash your hands before you touch them. Change the lens solution everyday. Wear them for about 11 hours. Never sleep with your lenses on. The lens won’t break in your eye thanks to the soft lens we use today. Cut your nails. They can scratch the lens and tear them. Glasses with poly carbonate lens which are shatter proof are the safest option.


The eye is a delicate organ but caring for it can be a breeze if we follow what the doctor says.

Myopia (short sight) affects children who watch television from close quarters.

Take Vitamin E to stay healthy, as eye balls grow with you and can do with some help.

Outdoor activity in the sun helps too. The sun produces dopamine which helps the eye.

If your parents wear spectacles then make sure you get your eyes checked regularly.

Bad news for gaming and computer addicts. The screen with it flickers tire eyes out and cause unnecessary strain. School project needs urgent attention? Take frequent breaks. Blink frequently. Wash your eyes with clean cold water. Don’t rush to read or watch television the minute you are done. Let the eyes rest a while.

Green leafy veggies, eggs and Vitamin E are musts. Forget snuggling down with a book. Lying down and reading is probably the worst thing you can do to your eyes for the angle is too strenuous for it.

If you have hurt your eyes get a doctor to take a look immediately. Squinting can make you the popular class clown but too much of it can make the squint permanent leading to something called a “lazy eye”. In short all your eye would then want to do is squint and not help you ‘see’ stuff properly.

If the urge to rub your eyes is too great to be avoided, check for allergies. Keep an adult posted about any redness or persistent watering.

Some exercises

Pencil push ups: Hold a pencil at arm’s length. Look at its tip. Move it gradually towards your eyes. Stop when you see double. Repeat for about 20 times.

Pendulum move: Watch a pendulum move.

“They won’t reduce your spectacle power but will help tone the muscles and keep the eye healthy,” says Dr. Mohan Rajan.


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