What is Phacoemulcification, or phaco?
A tiny probe is inserted through a minute incision (1.4mm to 1.8mm) to on the side of the cornea (the clear, dome-shaped surface that covers the front of the eye). This instrument vibrates at an extremely high rate of speed caused by high frequency sound waves.
The ultrasonic vibration breaks the cataract into fine pieces, which are suctioned out of the eye. After all the cataract material is removed, the back half of the lens or capsule is left behind and the IOL is placed inside. Since this method does not involve any stitches, this method is called "NO STITCH" Cataract Surgery also.
From less-traumatic surgery to earlier return of vision, new cold phaco cataract removal technology is delivering ever-increasing benefits to patients. Cold phaco systems offer new capabilities that allow surgeons to move up to the next step in cataract surgery-bi-manual micro-incision phacoemulcification. Visual outcomes are improved with this technology. Cold Phaco gives the surgeon the ability to control ultrasonics and aspiration simultaneously and independently. With new technologies available cataract surgeons will be performing procedures with incisions as small as 1.0mm. With traditional phaco, wound burns are often a real possibility. The new cold phaco technology reduces risk to the patient and may enable better recovery.
Advances have been made in cold phaco, particularly in energy efficiency, follow-ability and temperature regulation. It improves the delivery of ultrasonic energy to the anterior segment, which in turn, decreases the amount and duration of power delivered to the eye. The worst action one can take during phaco is delivering too much ultrasound energy. You don't even have to touch the cornea to create problems.
What are the advantages of phacoemulsification with foldable IOL over conventional cataract surgery?
It allows for a injection less, stitchless, painless, no bandage surgery.
1. Drops of local anesthetic agent are used instead of an injection in the eye, thus leading to a walk-in walk out procedure.
2. Early visual rehabilitation for the patient.
3. Minimum curvatural changes occur in the eye following surgery.
4. Post-surgery, the wound is very secure.
5. Final glasses can be prescribed within two weeks.