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What is a Cataract?
Cataracts are often a part of the ageing process. They are a common condition that causes cloudy areas to develop in the lens of your eye. These cloudy patches will make your vision blurred and not as sharp as it used to be. Sometimes, if not treated, cataracts can cause blindness.
The good news is that cataracts are easy to treat and the treatment is one of the most widely performed in the world, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).
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What is Cataract Surgery?
Cataract surgery is one of the most common eye treatments carried out in the UK, with over 300,000 having the surgery every year [Source: NHS website].
The surgery is fairly simple in principle— the natural lens of your eye is taken out and is replaced with a new artificial lens that matches your exact prescription and the unique characteristics of your eye. This will eliminate the blurriness you experienced because of the cataract and help to correct vision problems you might have had at the same time. 
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Is Cataract Surgery safe?
The World Health Organization predicts that by the year 2020 more than 32 million cataract surgeries will take place globally on an annual basis. It is one of the most common surgeries in the world. It is important to understand that any form of surgery has a degree of risk. Less than 1% of patients will develop a complication and the majority of these are easily overcome through a personal aftercare plan. Most people are back at work within a few days.
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How long does it take to perform Cataract Surgery?
Cataract surgery is actually relatively quick to perform and usually takes about 20 minutes for each eye. If you have cataracts in both eyes, each eye will be treated on separate days, usually one week apart. You’ll be awake for the treatment but you won’t feel anything thanks to a local anaesthetic that will be given to you before the surgery. 
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Will Cataract Surgery hurt?
Even though you’re awake for the treatment, you won’t feel any pain because of the local anaesthetic that you’ll have been given.  As the anaesthetic wears off you might begin to feel some pain but this is only lasts for a few hours and is easily managed with over-the-counter pain relief.
The part of cataract surgery that some patients report as feeling the most uncomfortable isn’t actually during the treatment— it’s when a holder is applied to keep your eye open. 
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Will I feel the synthetic lens in my eye?
Because the synthetic lens used in cataract surgery is put in the inside of your eye, you won’t feel anything. This is different to an ordinary contact lens that sits on the surface of your eye which you probably will be able to feel. 
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How quickly will I see the results of Cataract Surgery?
A lot of factors determine how quickly you recover, and this means that it’s hard to put an exact estimate on when you will begin to see the results of cataract surgery. It is generally accepted that most people will begin to see an improvement in their vision within a couple of weeks. Some patients report a significant improvement in the quality of their vision within 24 hours of the treatment. 
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When can I go back to work?
Recovery times vary widely from person to person and you can return to work as soon as you feel that your vision is comfortable enough. For some people that might mean a few days, for others, a few weeks. 
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How long does it last?
The lens that is put into your eye is designed to last a long time. Not only does it solve the problem of cataracts in your eye, it can also correct your prescription. That said, your vision can sometimes change when you get older, and this means that you might have to wear glasses. 
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Where is my nearest Optical Express clinic?
As one of the UK and Ireland’s leading private providers of cataract surgery, Optical Express have a range of state of the art clinics across both countries. Simply click on the link to find your nearest cataract surgery clinic and arrange your free consultation today. 

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