Friday, October 7, 2011

Flashing & Curves after Cataract Surgery

Question: I had cataract surgery one week ago and see the curve of the lens as well as flashing constantly-is this to be expected?

Answer: What you are describing may well be an occurrence called "dysphotopsia". A dysphotopsia is an optical phenomenon caused by the Lens Implant used for vision correction for Cataract Surgery in some patients. A number of patients who have just had Cataract Surgery and a Lens Implants experience a problem that often shows up at night when viewing a light. A halo appears around or near the light. For most, this happens when seeing the headlights of oncoming cars while driving or riding in a car. Sometimes it appears just as little "glistening's" or flashes of light. It is very common and usually of short duration and lasts no more than 1-2 months or less after their surgery. Some patients experience what is termed a "negative dysphotopsia" in which instead of a halo, they experiences a dark curved region on the temporal edge of their field of vision. This optical phenomenon is usually caused by the way in which light is reflected off the edge of the lens implant due to its shape. This creates a new visual pattern that patients adapt to shortly after their Cataract Surgery. Both the dysphotopsia and the negative dysphotopsia are caused by the presence of the new lens and the pattern of light reflected and refracted through the Lens Implant and its edge. In almost all cases the brain adapts to the new light pattern after a brief time as noted earlier and patients simply forget that it was ever there.

Important Note: The information presented on the About Cataract Surgery Blog or provided in response to a request for information in the Ask Cataract Surgeons section on aboutcataractsurgery.com is not intended to diagnose or treat eye problems, eye conditions or eye diseases including appropriateness of treatment, risks, complications or side effects as related to Cataracts, Cataract Surgery of Lens Implants. In particular a response to an inquiry made on the Ask Cataract Surgeons section of aboutcataractsurgery.com is not meant to take the place of the professional medical care provided by your eye doctor, ophthalmologist and Cataract Surgeon surgeon. Contacting us via e-mail or any other means is not a substitute for medical care.

7 comments:

  1. Hi I have had the m plus lens fitted 3 weeks ago and have the constant flicering/twitching/shimmering all day even in low light conditions ,the only time it is not there is when I am in a dimly lit room with no lights on ,to be honest I am sick of it and just want to close my eyes ,wearing sunglasses helps but it is still noticed ,I find it hard to believe that it will go away as the edge of the lens will not change ,and I am not sure how the brain can adjust to such a prominant abberation I wait and hope that something can be done ,most people seem to only complain of this sympton as an occasional occurance where as we have this as a constant all day event

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  3. Statisically, this symptom disappears within one to two months of lens implantation. If it does not, I would seek a second opinion as to the type of lens used, the position of the lens and lens material.

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  4. Dear Anonymous:

    I had my operation 7 weeks ago and can totally relate to your story. I was told that the flickering/shimmering, etc. would go away and/or my brain would adjust to it. So far, nothing has changed, and I too am totally frustrated. I am told by the doctor that the lens is centered properly and the incision has healed. How is your eye doing now?

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  5. I had my operation 6 months ago. I have all of the same symptoms of flickering/shimmering and what appears to be foggy peripheral vision that you all have mentioned. I, too, was told that my brain has to adjust and lets just wait and see. I saw my doctor again yesterday and am scheduled to have the lens replaced. Thank goodness. He told me to look up dysphotopsias so that I could see that I was not an unusual case. I am thankful that he listened and took me seriously. Thank you all for sharing.

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  6. I am only 10 days postop, have the identical symptoms of a dark curved area and shimmering lights all the time. I was told it 'should' get better. Has anyone actually had a significant problem like this improve on its own? So disappointed and discouraged.

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  7. I had my cataract surgery in January and had similar issues. I am pleased to say that I have gotten used to the shimmering pretty much. My doctor also said it is the light flickering off the lens that causes this. I find I still have problems first thing in the morning if I am trying to read and at night in bed when I read with a side lamp, but I find I notice it a lot less now! I hope that will be the case for all of you!

    Trudy

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