Wednesday, September 4, 2013

No Intermediate Vision after Cataract Surgery

Question: I am 47 and had cataract surgery approximately 6 weeks ago.  I have blurred/spotty vision, which I was told is the folding/scarring and can be corrected with laser. The main issue I am having is midrange vision.  I don't feel it is a clear/focused as it should be. For example, if I am cooking or cleaning, I feel like I have to strain to see it well enough. I knew prior I would have to wear "cheaters" for reading/computer, but almost feel as if I need them for simple tasks like cooking.  I was told my eyes are not as flexible now that the lenses have been placed and may need bifocals for close up and midrange vision.  I thought I would not need anything but the cheaters after cataract surgery.  Everything seems just slightly "off" and it is unnerving. How can I be sure I had the right prescription lens placed?  I know once the laser is done I cannot have it changed.  When they did a 2 week out exam, my distant vision was still not 20/20.  I just don't know what to do to correct my vision issues.

Answer: During cataract surgery the cloudy crystalline lens in your eye is removed and replaced with a clear plastic lens implant. There are several types of lens implants that all correct vision somewhat differently-depending on what you choose and what your cataract surgeon recommends. A basic monofocal lens implant ONLY corrects distance vision-NOT intermediate or near vision really at all and requires bifocals, progressives or reading glasses or “cheaters” to see anything in the midrange or up close. Certain aspheric lens implants, although they are actually only monofocal, do afford some slight intermediate or midrange vision-BUT STILL REQUIRE bifocals, progressives or reading glasses or “cheaters” to see anything in the midrange or up close clearly. Multifocal or Accommodating Lens Implants allow patients to see far, near and in between typically without the use or full time dependence on glasses. We do not know which type was discussed with you or what type you have. If you are concerned with the accuracy of the prescription then ask your cataract surgeon for a current refraction and see if a mild pair of eyeglasses might be of help.

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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