After Cataract Surgery

Once your cataract surgery is complete, a number of steps and precautions will be necessary to help you heal properly and restore clear vision.

The Immediate Recovery

Your eye surgeon will place a protective shield over your eye and keep you for a brief stay in the outpatient recovery area before you go home. It is vital that you have someone with you to drive you home, even if you only had the surgery on one eye.

Cataract surgery
  • Your eye doctor will give you eye drops to prevent infection and inflammation. Use them as directed.
  • Plan for return visits within a few days and again within a few weeks. These are very important for your doctor to monitor your recovery.
  • After your vision is stable, your eye surgeon may prescribe glasses if needed. Even without corrective lenses, many patients report improved vision within a few days and can return to work.
  • It is possible that vision may be somewhat cloudy for up to three months after cataract surgery. This is normal and should subside as your eye heals.

The Longer Recovery

For the first several weeks after surgery, there are some safety measures your doctor will recommend to prevent damage or infection. The important thing is not to have any impact on the eye that would interfere with healing. So avoid rubbing or pressing on your eye and stay away from any environment where something could hit your eye, such as a football field or basketball court.

Cataract surgery
  • Refrain from strenuous activity, bending, and heavy lifting
  • Keep your eye closed while bathing and avoid having water splashed into it
  • Do not engage in activities that could expose your eye to dust or other infection-causing pollutants

You should contact your eye surgeon immediately if you experience any of the following:

Cataract surgery
  • Complete vision loss
  • Increased eye redness
  • Persistent pain that does not respond to medication
  • Nausea, vomiting or excessive coughing

If you have cataracts in both eyes, your doctor typically schedules a second surgery for the other eye. This allows time for the first eye to heal before the second eye is treated.

You can read more on our Cataracts Questions and IOL Technology pages.

If you would like to schedule a cataract consultation with an eye surgeon in your area, please contact us.