Are you in need of Cataract Surgery?
Our Eyesight Hawaii ophthalmologists can answer your questions regarding cataracts and cataract surgery. Dr. John Olkowski, chief surgeon and founder of EyeSight Hawaii, is a corneal specialist with over 25 years of experience with cataract surgery and has been honored as one of the Top Doctors by his peers. Our chief surgeon and medical director of EyeSight Hawaii – Maui, Dr. Catherine Makin, specializes in advanced intraocular lens technology for premium laser cataract surgery.
What is Cataract?
The most common cause of cataracts is aging, but other causes include trauma, medications, diabetes and prolonged exposure to ultraviolet light. Normally, cataracts will develop gradually and progressively. The normally transparent lens of the eye becomes discolored, clouded and hardened. Symptoms are often described as cloudy, dim or blurry vision, similar to looking through a waterfall. Symptoms may also include sensitivity to light, faded colors, excessive glare, poor night vision and frequent changes in eyeglass or contact prescriptions.
Treatment for Cataracts
Cataract surgery is the most commonly performed surgery in the United States and is done mostly on an out-patient basis. In most cases, the cataract is replaced by an intraocular lens (IOL). An IOL is a clear, artificial lens that requires no care and becomes a permanent part of your eye. Because an IOL allows more light to pass through to the retina, previously dull vision is often described as being brighter and with more vivid colors after surgery. Also, the IOL typically focuses light better than the original cloudy lens, often reducing the patient’s dependence on eyeglasses or contact lenses. At EyeSight Hawaii, we utilize Phacoemulsification (or phaco) the most modern and proven method of cataract surgery. This typically involves a no-needle anesthesia, no-stitch, and no-patch treatment that generally heals more rapidly with less inflammation and discomfort than older techniques. We also offer our patients the new standard in precision laser cataract surgery with the CATALYS Precision Laser System.
Video courtesy of KGMB9
Amazing IOL’s now Available
- Monofocal lens – for vision at one distance
- Toric lens – for correcting higher levels of astigmatism
- Presbyopia correcting lens — to correct NEAR, intermediate and far vision including:
- Crystalens – A focusing IOL for vision at all distances
Cataract Surgery with the Crystalens
With EyeSight Hawaii, there are several types of replacement lenses available for cataract surgery. The revolutionary Crystalens is the state-of-the-art replacement lens that is designed to move, or accommodate, and thus allow the eye to focus on objects near, far and all distances in-between seamlessly. Standard Monofocal IOL’s are fixed lens that do not flex or accommodate so only allow the patient to focus at one distance. Unlike fixed focal lenses, which don’t move, Crystalens has the ability to focus as your eye’s natural lens did when you were younger. (Read a Honolulu Star-Bulletin article on Hawaii’s first Crystalens patients.)
Dr. Olkowski was one of the first surgeons nationally selected by Eyeonics Inc., the company offering the lens, to be trained by Eyeonics Inc., and given credentials to use Crystalens for cataract surgery. Dr. Olkowski is a nationally recognized Crystalens-certified ophthalmologist and has received the Center of Excellence award for his experience and leadership.
Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE)
Currently, Dr. Olkowski uses refractive lens exchange for patients who have imperfections in the natural lens of their eye, or in other words, early signs of cataracts. This procedure is sometimes referred to as a refractive lensectomy or a clear lens exchange. These lens implants replace the natural lens, which has imperfections because of the eye’s natural aging process. In some cases, this procedure can be combined with LASIK, rather than as an alternative to LASIK to completely reduce a patient’s need for glasses or contacts.
Why choose an RLE over LASIK?
1. Because a patient may have slight imperfections in the natural lens of the eye that will one day further develop into a cataract, it makes sense to remove that lens along with the early imperfections, to improve the overall quality of the entire eye system. This is most common in patients who are 55 years of age and older.
2. For hyperopic (farsighted) patients, a lens implant makes better sense for the long term. LASIK does an excellent job with helping patients that have mild hyperopia, but when the hyperopic prescription is outside of the range Dr. Olkowski usually treats with LASIK, an RLE is a better alternative.
3. With new IOL technology, which includes the Crystalens for cataract surgery, a patient’s accommodation can be restored after RLE surgery. For patients that are over the age of 40 and require the assistance of reading glasses or bifocals, an accommodating lens implant can greatly reduce, or even eliminate the need for reading glasses as well as glasses for distance.
When speaking with Dr. Olkowski about cataract surgery at our EyeSight Hawaii Honolulu or Maui office, it is very important to tell him about any medications you are currently taking or have ever taken especially the following:
- Cardura (Doxazosin)
- Dibenzyline (Phenoxybenzamine)
- Flomax (Tamsulosin)
- Hytrin (Terazosin)
- Minipress (Prazosin)
- Regitine, Rogitine (Phentolamine)
- Uroxatral (Alfuzosin)