Eye Specialists of Indiana
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Frequently Asked Questions

What to expect before, during, and after cataract surgery at Eye Specialists of Indiana. Cataract Surgery questions. Understanding cataract surgery.


Q: What should I wear to surgery?

A: Wear something warm and comfortable. You may wear deodorant but avoid using lotion, aftershave, perfume, or makeup.

Q: Should I take my medications before coming?

A: Take all your morning medications, especially those for blood pressure.

Q: If I am diabetic, can I take my insulin?

A: You should take one half (1/2) of your morning insulin before coming to surgery.

Q: Will I be put to sleep?

A: You will not go to sleep completely. We frequently use a drug called Midazolam (Versed) which relaxes you, yet allows you to follow simple directions. You may remember all the details during surgery; however, most patients experience no pain during the operation.

Q: How long should I expect to be there?

A: You should expect to be at our office for 5-6 hours. This includes your examination and testing in our clinic, surgery, and recovery.

Q: How long does the cataract surgery itself take?

A: Cataract surgery is typically completed in about 10 minutes. This can vary depending upon the difficulty of the cataract that is being removed and the variables that arise with each individual case.

Q: Where should my family wait while I’m in surgery?

A: We ask kindly that family/friends wait in our first floor reception area. Someone from our surgery center will come and get them when you are ready to go home. Due to space constraints and our focus on comfort for elderly surgical patients, we do not have a play area or other diversions appropriate for children. Please make alternative arrangements for children during your visit.

Q: Can I have something to eat before surgery?

A: You can eat a light breakfast, such as toast or cereal. Foods that are greasy or spicy should not be eaten prior to surgery. Our nurses will call you to let you know when you should no longer eat.

Q: Where can friends and family get something to eat while I am in surgery?

A: Your friends and family are welcome to bring a snack. Otherwise, a map of area restaurants will be available for them at both the front desk and our technician desk.

Q: What should I expect after I go home?

A: You will go home with a protective shield over your eye. Please leave the shield on until your follow up visit. One of our nurses will give you all the instructions you need before you leave and call you again later in the day to check on you.

Q: If I have requested a driver to pick me up on the day of surgery, when will he pick me up?

A: Our driver will call you the night before between 7PM and 9PM to get directions and give you a pick-up time. The pick-up time you are given may vary slightly due to circumstances surrounding our transportation schedule.

Q: If I wear contact lenses should I leave them out prior to cataract surgery?

A: Yes. Soft contact lenses need to be out one (1) week prior to surgery. Hard lenses or gas permeable lenses should be out at least two (2) weeks prior to surgery.

Q: What can I expect while being evaluated at ESI?

A: You should expect to be with a technician for about 30-45 minutes. She will do tests that determine the overall health of your eyes and she will measure the length and curvature of the eye to help determine your lens implant power. After these tests are complete, she will put drops in your eyes to dilate your pupils. Following a brief wait (15-30 minutes), you will see the doctor for an exam. The doctor will discuss your eye conditions and determine the best route of care for you. If you decide to proceed with surgery, you will then be escorted to the surgery center by one of our nurses. For a more extensive look at what to expect, please visit our Patient Experience page.

Q: Is it possible to have my astigmatism reduced at the time of cataract surgery?

A: Yes. You can discuss this with your family eye doctor or with our doctors prior to your cataract surgery. Please be advised that additional procedures that are not covered by your medical insurance, such as astigmatism reduction, will require cash, check, or credit card payment at the time of surgery.

Q. How soon can I return to daily activities following cataract surgery?

A. Modern state-of-the-art cataract treatment allows the eye to heal much quicker than ever before. As a result, patients are usually released with very few restrictions. Reading, watching television, sewing, and limited amounts of driving are normally permitted.