ABOUT Refractive Surgery
Cataracts are a leading cause of vision loss around the world, but fortunately, they can be treated. Classified as an opacity of the natural lens of the eye, cataracts generally start to develop around age 40. Due to the fact that cataracts are foggy regions within the makeup of the lens, the lens must be taken out and replaced with an intraocular lens (IOL) to control the disease.
Board-certified ophthalmologist Dr. Ralph Chu is highly experienced in helping patients gain renewed, clear vision using advanced techniques to treat cataracts. At Chu Vision Institute, he is pleased to provide refractive cataract surgery, a personalized procedure that utilizes advanced laser technology to precisely remove the cataract. Refractive cataract surgery is able to digitally diagram the eye's surface and make a more delicate, scalpel-free incision, greatly minimizing the chances for complications.
For patients with refractive errors, such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, and presbyopia, we can replace the natural lenses with custom IOLs to act as prescription lenses. These specialty intraocular lenses can help eliminate or decrease a patient's reliance on prescription glasses or contacts. Schedule a visit with our team in Bloomington, MN to learn about our options for clearer vision.
"Bare with my lengthy review but if you’re like me, I wanted to know what others true thoughts were and I scoured as many reviews as possible to make sure I was making the best decision for me and my eyes. I am SO, SO thankful for Dr. Chu and Dr. Heckman’s expertise and honesty. I decided it was time to get Lasik and went in for my consultation. From check-in to my latest follow up, everyone at the Chu Vision Institute was friendly, warm, and helpful. Due to some past corneal scarring, Dr. Chu recommended that I get Lasik on one eye and PRK (ASA) on the other. I was extremely nervous about PRK because of the slightly longer recovery time and I really just wanted to wake up and have 20/20 vision like my friends who have had Lasik. The day of my procedure, they made sure I had all my questions and concerns answered before they let me in to have my surgery. That was extremely comforting to me and Dr. Heckman explained why PRK was recommended over Lasik. Simply put, I wouldn’t have had a good outcome if Dr. Chu had performed Lasik on both eyes. Both procedures went well and Dr. Chu confirmed his right decision during the procedure which took all of maybe 10 minutes for both eyes. As instructed, I went home and rested and could literally see 20/20 the next day with my Lasik eye. The PRK eye takes a little longer to heal but can already see better! (I was worried my blurry eye would affect my vision, but it did not). Recovery has been great and will continue to get better in the next few weeks. Now my husband wants to get his eyes done. Chu Vision Institute has exceeded my expectations and I am very happy with my results!"- E.M. / Google / Oct 20, 2020
"I had cataracts removed from both eyes. Dr. Chu and his staff were wonderful to work with. From the exam to the surgical procedure and recovery, everyone was very professional and pleasant . I had a perfect outcome and would highly recommend the Chu vision Clinic."- B.S. / Google / Oct 02, 2020
"I’ve been going to Chu vision for about three years now and and I’ve had excellent service each and every time. They follow me yearly for my dry eye condition. They are extremely thorough and take the time to answer all my questions. Highly recommend them."- C.S. / Google / Jul 31, 2020
"Exceptional. I felt like family as soon as I walked through the front door. Staff was extremely knowledgeable and friendly and my LASIK procedure went flawlessly. Like most folks, I did extensive research for months before my consult (word of mouth and online) I highly recommend Chu Vision for your procedure."- C.M. / Google / Mar 19, 2020
"I want to thank everyone at Chu Vision for the remarkable care we received recently. The clinic has an immaculate protocol to prevent Covid exposure for all of its patients. One might think that all the masks would prevent a warm, caring environment but not at Chu Vision! To a person, everyone was warm and welcoming. Dr. Chu was terrific and extremely thorough. The clinic was able to assess my husband’s acute vision change using a remarkable variety of tests and tools. What would have taken weeks at another clinic took only hours at Chu Vision. We won’t ever go anywhere else. Thank you so very much!"- K.D. / Yelp / Jul 13, 2020
Candidates for Refractive Cataract Surgery
You are likely a candidate for refractive cataract surgery if you have been diagnosed with cataracts and you no longer have the clear vision you once did with your prescription glasses or contacts. Refractive cataract surgery is typically suited for patients with mid- to late-stage cataracts, but you might be able to have them removed at an earlier stage. During your initial visit, Dr. Chu will perform a comprehensive eye exam and evaluate your health history, vision needs, and lifestyle. These details will also help to determine which custom IOL would be best for your vision goals. If you have had LASIK surgery in the past, you might not be a candidate for refractive cataract surgery.
How Is the Surgery Done?
About an hour before refractive cataract surgery, a member of our team will fully numb the patient’s eyes with specialized eye drops. Laser cataract surgery is very similar to traditional cataract surgery except we employ innovative femtosecond lasers. This remarkable technology graphs an extremely detailed map of the eye; therefore, the lasers can find the precise site of the cataract and soften it before breaking it up into several tiny pieces. At this point, these pieces are suctioned out of the eye and a small incision is made to replace the preexisting lens with a multifocal intraocular lens (IOL).
Unlike many other cataract surgeries, refractive cataract surgery is unique in that it permanently enhances the shape of the cornea. This allows light to seamlessly bend and reach the retina in the correct manner. A properly shaped cornea can solve numerous ocular issues, such as astigmatism, nearsightedness, and farsightedness.
Due to its unique precision, laser cataract surgery technology offers exceptional results with a quicker healing process than traditional surgery. Laser cataract surgery is a quick outpatient procedure, lasting about 20 minutes. This makes it perfect for anyone hoping to correct their vision without prolonged pain or taking significant time off of work.
Results After Refractive Cataract Surgery
The recovery time for refractive cataract surgery normally ranges from 4 – 8 weeks; however, it varies from patient to patient. During the recovery process, you'll need to stick to strict aftercare directions to foster the best possible results. You will also be advised to use a few types of prescription eye drops throughout the healing period, and it is crucial not to press on or touch the eyes for any reason while they get better. We may also require some patients to wear an eye patch for a while.
We will have you come back for a few follow-up evaluations so Dr. Chu can monitor your recovery and make sure your vision is improving on schedule. For the majority of our patients, vision is noticeably improved right after the procedure, but it stays cloudy for a few days until the post-surgery inflammation starts to decrease. Some patients report seeing halos or glares around lights, but this tends to decrease over time. In general, patients are able to enjoy significantly clearer vision with less dependence on eyeglasses.
Obtain Clearer Vision
If not treated appropriately, cataracts may drastically affect your day-to-day routine and eventually cause complete blindness. However, the team at Chu Vision Institute can remove your cataracts so you can regain clearer eyesight and a brighter outlook. We invite you to call our office in Bloomington, MN to schedule a consultation with Dr. Chu, and learn more about your options to remove cataracts.
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