Femtosecond laser cataract surgery is a great alternative to traditional cataract surgery. In fact, many ophthalmologists would say it’s an all-around better choice.
This being said, cataract surgery as a whole is considered an extremely safe and effective surgery. So, whether you opt for laser-assisted cataract surgery or traditional surgery, you can rest easy knowing that you’ve opted for surgery with a high success rate and that you’re on the road to better vision.
But what is femtosecond laser cataract surgery? And what are the advantages of femtosecond laser cataract surgery? Let’s dig a little deeper.
What is a femtosecond laser?
A femtosecond laser is an infrared laser that is leveraged in a handful of different eye surgeries (not just cataract surgery).
During cataract surgery, the femtosecond laser is used in lieu of a handheld blade to break apart tissue, and it is used in conjunction with a camera and computer to accurately map out the surface of the eye.
The laser receives information from the computer that tells it where to create an incision — taking into consideration depth and size, as well. All of these steps result in more precision and predictability in femtosecond laser cataract surgery compared to traditional cataract surgery.
What are the benefits of using a femtosecond laser?
When it comes to laser surgery vs. traditional surgery for cataracts, safety is certainly a benefit with both, and the cataract surgery success rate, in general, sits at around 98%.
But when it comes to femtosecond laser cataract surgery, in particular, you can expect things to run even more safely and smoothly. This is due to the added precision and predictability of using a computer-controlled laser — as opposed to relying on the skill and expertise your doctor has with a handheld blade.
Reduced likelihood of side effects
Whether you choose to go with traditional or blade-free cataract surgery, you’ll be up against the same side effects — which can include everything from infection and bleeding to detachment and pressure. However, with computer-controlled surgery, the added precision can help you out once again by decreasing your chances of experiencing cataract surgery side effects.
The quicker, more accurate nature of the laser can only improve the recovery process.
Another thing to consider is that traditional surgery is largely reliant on your surgeon and his or her experience and skill. If your surgeon is not that comfortable with traditional cataract surgery, then you could suffer from a variety of complications, like irregular cuts and trauma.
With a laser-assisted cataract surgery like femtosecond laser cataract surgery, an irregular cut isn’t a concern, and your eye will be under less trauma since the laser operates in less time than a handheld blade.
Learn more: Is cataract surgery safe?
Reduced likelihood of manual complications
Femtosecond lasers are extremely precise, consistent, and reliable, and there are a handful of potential issues this laser nearly eliminates simply due to its overall precision. This includes when a cornea flap is cut too thick by the surgeon.
This particular issue is quite common with traditional cataract surgery and can lead to bulging, which ultimately causes deteriorating vision. Since femtosecond laser cataract surgery maps out the eye and lays out depth and location for the laser, an improperly cut cornea is rare.
Increased likelihood of a seamless recovery
If you were debating between laser-assisted cataract surgery and traditional surgery, the recovery timeline might come up during your decision process. However, when it comes to recovery, there really are no distinct differences between the two surgeries (so long as there are no complications) and you should expect to see clearly within two weeks.
Keep in mind, though… if you do end up experiencing complications that are typically more common with traditional cataract surgery, then your recovery timeline will be much longer.
Interested in learning more about femtosecond laser cataract surgery?
If you’ve decided to move forward with cataract surgery but not sure if femtosecond laser cataract surgery is the right choice, we’d love to talk with you. At Eye Center of Texas, we’re home to some of the best cataract surgeons in Houston, and we can help you better understand the benefits of femtosecond laser surgery for cataracts.
To learn more about laser cataract surgery or to schedule an appointment, give us a call at 713-797-1010, or contact us online.
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