Associates in Eyecare is pleased offer our patients all the benefits modern cataract surgery has to offer. Each year new lenses and new technologies are FDA approved to maximize your outcomes and the last year has been no exception! Please see our "What's new this year" tab below.
What is a Cataract?
Everyone is born with a clear focusing lens inside their eye. Over time the lens becomes cloudy. A cataract is a clouding of the natural lens of the eye, producing a frosted, cloudy or foggy view through the affected eye. For people with cataracts, many daily tasks are made more difficult due to the cataracts, including driving, watching television, reading, and using medication. In most cases, cataracts develop gradually with a slow worsening of visual symptoms. Some people do not even realize they are losing their vision due to the slow progression.
Initially, the patient may manage the cataract symptoms with stronger lighting and frequent changes in eyeglasses. However, ultimately cataract surgery becomes necessary to preserve the vision. Fortunately, cataract surgery is an extremely safe and effective procedure.
Signs and Symptoms of Cataracts
Signs and symptoms of cataracts may include:
- Clouded, blurred or dim vision
- Increasing difficulty with vision at night
- Sensitivity to light and glare
- Seeing "halos" around lights
- Frequent changes in eyeglass or contact lens prescription
- Fading or yellowing of colors
- Double vision in a single eye
When Should I Consider Cataract Surgery?
It's up to you and your doctor to decide when cataract surgery is advisable. Most eye doctors suggest considering cataract surgery when your cataracts begin to affect your quality of life or interfere with your ability to perform normal daily activities, such as reading or driving at night
A cataract is treated by removing the old clouded lens and replacing it with a new artificial lens to restore your vision. This lens is called an implant or intraocular lens (IOL).
The surgeons of Associates in Eyecare implant every type of FDA approved lens category including the light adjustable lens, multifocal (PanOptix, Synergy, Symfony), extended depth of focus lenses (Symfony and Vivity) and toric lenses (all brands). Every eye is unique and every patient has individual vision goals so a customized plan is developed before every cataract surgery. During your consultation, we will take multiple maps and measurements of your eye to help develop your customized treatment plan. Together we will decide which lens is the best option.
New Light Adjustable Lens
We are excited to be one of the first surgical practices in Denver to offer new light adjustable lens with cataract surgery. For the first time ever, we have the ability to fine tune the power of the lens (and how well you see without glasses) AFTER surgery with a painless UV light treatment in our office. The videos below will help to explain this exciting new technology.
We are committed to offering our patients all of the latest technology that has been shown to improve patient outcomes based on peer-reviewed non-industry sponsored studies. We offer all of our patients pre-operative testing with topography and OCT retinal scanning free of charge, helping to rule out conditions which could impact your outcome. Cataract surgery has become refractive cataract surgery, helping our patients achieve their goals for their vision. Examples of our technology include the following:
- ORA intra-operative aberrometry for lens power determination, especially useful for post-refractive patients
- IOL master 700, the most modern machine available for lens power measurement
- Pentacam testing for corneal astigmatism
Dr. Kruger and Dr. Kokx have both performed over 5000 cataract surgeries. All this experience has translated into a team that has a much lower complication rate than most cataract surgeons in the area based on internally published data from the surgery centers in Denver. We are also specialists in eyes that have had previous refractive surgery and complicated pre-existing conditions such as Fuchs' Dystrophy and pseudo-exfoliation syndrome. We are proud of our extremely low complication rate and look forward to working with you to achieve your goals.
Patients are normally awake but sedated for the procedure. You will receive local anesthesia (numbing medicine) for pain control and a sedative to relax you. These work extremely well to make you comfortable.
Looking through a microscope, the doctor will make a small incision in the eye. The surgeon then removes the cloudy lens. Cataract removal involves the use of instruments and a machine that uses sound waves (ultrasonic energy) to break up the lens and suction it out. This is called phacoemulsification. A man-made lens, called an artificial intraocular lens (IOL), is placed next. It will help improve your vision.
The surgery usually lasts about 10 minutes. One eye is done at a time. If both eyes need cataract removal, your surgeon may recommend waiting a few weeks before having cataract surgery on the other eye.
To watch a video of our surgeons performing and narrating a real case of cataract surgery, see our video:
Dr. Kruger enjoys sharing his advanced cataract surgery techniques with other cataract surgeons. If you are interested in seeing these videos, please see Dr. Kruger's YouTube channel.
Cataract Patients With Glaucoma
Our doctors are experienced with a variety of combined procedures called MIGS (minimally invasive glaucoma surgery) including the iStent and goniotomy to help treat your glaucoma the same time as the cataract surgery.
What is iStent?
The iStent Trabecular Micro-Bypass stent is a new surgical therapy for glaucoma that is designed to improve aqueous outflow to safely lower eye pressure and may reduce the number of glaucoma drops that you take, but this will be at the discretion of your doctor.
Stent is the smallest medical device ever approved by the FDA and is placed in your eye during cataract surgery. It is so small, you won't be able to see or feel it after surgery but it will be continuously working to help reduce your eye pressure.
How can iStent help me?
Every day, you are probably taking one or more eye drops to control your eye pressure. By improving the outflow of fluid from your eyes, iStent works to help control your eye pressure. After implantation of iStent, many patients are able to control their eye pressure.
Controlling eye pressure is extremely important to reduce the risk for vision loss due to glaucoma. If you forget to take your eye drops or 'skip a dose', this can cause large changes in your eye pressure. Large changes in eye pressure can increases the risk for vision loss.
If you have both glaucoma and cataracts, ask your eye doctor if iStent is right for you.
NEW IN 2021 - 2022
The Synergy Lens. This is the new trifocal lens from Johnson & Johnson that gives excellent broad range vision and gives a 90% chance of not needing glasses for all types of activities.
The Light Adjustable Lens. This is a revolutionary new lens that can be adjusted with a painless in office light treatment after cataract surgery. This cutting-edge lens technology is adjustable multiple times after surgery, giving us the best chance of un-aided 20/20 vision that we have ever seen.