Monday, July 23, 2012

Cataract Surgery Second Opinion

Question: My brother recently had a dense cataract removed from his left eye and complications arose when the cataract cracked and fell behind his eye. This has required additional surgery by a retinal specialist and the outcome will not be known for several months.Meanwhile, the cataract in the right eye must be removed and is considered to be even more difficult than the left. Are some cataract surgeons more skilled at removal than others? Should he find another ophthalmologist for the second surgery?

Answer: What you describe is most likely a Cataract Surgery complication whereby there was a ruptured lens capsule allowing a fragment of the crystalline lens to fall into the vitreous. While this is an uncommon complication is does seem to occur more often with complex or difficult Cataract operations such as where the Cataract is especially dense. This does indeed require a Vitrectomy-a surgical removal of some of the citreous along with the lens fragment and is performed by a Vitreoretinal Surgeon rather than a Cataract Surgeon. Certainly more difficult Cataract Surgery procedures are best performed by highly experienced Cataract Surgeons. However, the density of the Cataract may be the greater contributor to the complication rather than the inexperience of the surgeon. It is always acceptable to seek a second opinion-especially in surgical choices-if this makes you more comfortable. However keep in mind that there just may be difficulties no matter how experienced the surgeon is if the Cataract is dense, hard and difficult to extract. This is one of the reasons patients are encouraged to have a Cataract removed when it begins to disturb there vision rather than waiting for the Cataract to "ripen". 

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 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 or Lens Implants. In particular a response to an inquiry made on the Ask Cataract Surgeons section of is not meant to take the place of the professional medical care provided by your eye doctor, ophthalmologist and Cataract Surgeon. Contacting us via e-mail or any other means is not a substitute for medical care.

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