What Happens after Eye Surgery?
If being seen at Branson or Kensington, after about 20-30 minutes in the recovery area patients are usually able to go directly home after cataract surgery with the assistance of a friend or family member. If being seen at Humber, you will be given a card for your 1-day post-op and will either be seen later that day or the next day at our office.
A clear plastic protective shield will be provided to you to cover your eye while lying down or sleeping for 2-3 nights to protect your eye while sleeping. It will be given to you after your cataract operation. You should use sunglasses outdoors on sunny, bright days or when it is windy, raining or snowing to protect your eye.
When You Arrive Home From Surgery
• Eye drops SHOULD BE STARTED as soon as arriving home from surgery.
• You may be up and about and you may watch TV or read. You may bend over to pick up light objects such as shoes, books, etc but do not do anything more strenuous for the first couple of days and then gradually increase to normal activities by the end of the week. You may carefully bathe; wash your face and your hair. Try not to get water directly streaming into your eye especially in the first couple of days. However, in general, water does not harm the eye, but try to avoid getting soap or shampoo in the eye. After one week there are no physical restrictions.
• Avoid direct pressure on your eye such as rubbing the eye. It is normal for the operated eye to be red, tender, itch or feel as if a foreign body is in it. This may last a month. Regular or Extra-Strength Tylenol or Advil may be taken.
• It is in normal for the operated eye to be somewhat cloudy and out of focus until you receive your new spectacle lens. Your doctor will let you know if it is safe to drive. You should be aware that depth perception and judging distances may not be normal at first.
• You may be sensitive to the light. Although light is not harmful to the eye we have included sunglasses in your kit for you to wear outdoors when it is bright or windy.
• You may perform light exercise (treadmill, etc.) beginning 3-4 days after surgery. You may golf and play tennis after one week. Swimming should be avoided for two weeks and then only with goggles or surface swimming for another two weeks. Diving should be avoided for one month.
• You may choose to wear your glasses if you feel more comfortable with them on, but often the prescription will change after the surgery and you will find you see better without them, we usually recommend that patients see their optometrist or previous eye doctor to get fit for new pair of glasses; three to four weeks after the second eye is operated upon.
• You will have a follow-up visit with your eye surgeon or optometrist on the day of surgery or the next day and then about one week after cataract surgery. The second eye is done within one week to one month after the first eye surgery.
Should you have a sudden or worrisome loss of vision in the first week or two after surgery, it can be the start of a very serious eye infection and you should go to the emergency room immediately
For a printable copy of post-operative instructions and frequently asked questions after surgery, click below: