Surgery Instructions

Before Surgery

Schedule a pre-operative physical exam with your primary care doctor within 30 days of surgery. If both eyes are scheduled for surgery, try to have the pre-op exam within 30 days of the 2nd surgery.
Do not eat or drink anything after midnight before surgery.
If your surgery is in the afternoon, you may drink clear liquids (broth, apple juice, tea) up to 6 hours before surgery.
Start your eye drops the day before surgery in the surgical eye. Follow the instructions on your eye drop flow chart.
If you use eye drops for another eye disease, please clarify with your surgeon whether these should be continued. Glaucoma drops will often be continued throughout the postoperative period.

Day of Surgery

Take your normal medications if advised by your primary doctor with sips of water.
Do not wear eye make-up or cream on your face the morning of surgery. Do not bring personal items or valuables.
Use one set of eye drops before going to the surgery center/hospital.
Bring to Surgery:

  • Insurance cards
  • Photo ID
  • Dark sunglasses

You will likely receive IV sedation for surgery. When IV sedation is used, you must arrange for a caregiver to drive you home and stay with you for 24 hours. You may need help and your judgment may be impaired. You may not drive or operate heavy machinery for 24 hours. The caregiver should listen to the postop instructions. Avoid alcohol consumption for 24 hours after surgery. Wait 24 hours after surgery before making important decisions or signing documents.
You will be at the surgery center/hospital about 3 hours.

After Surgery

You will receive an eye shield from the Hospital/Surgery Center. Please wear this shield at bedtime and when napping for 1 week after your surgery.

You may drive 24 hours after surgery if the vision in your non-operative eye is good enough for Driver’s License Regulations.

Avoid lifting over 30 pounds, bending way over, or straining for 1 week.

You may read, watch TV, shave, bathe, shower, and shampoo your hair.

Do not wear eye make-up or cream on or around your eye for 1 week.

Do not swim or use a hot tub for 2 weeks.

Normal Symptoms after Surgery

Pain: Mild discomfort after surgery is common. You may take nonprescription pain medications (Tylenol, Acetaminophen, Ibuprofen, Advil, or Aleve for example). Severe pain is not normal – please call the office to determine if you should be seen.

Irritation: You may experience a feeling of scratchiness which should improve over the next several days. A freshly opened bottle of artificial tears may be used for irritation.
Dilation: Pupils will remain dilated for 1-2 days after surgery.

Blurry Vision: This will improve over the next several days to weeks. You may wear your present glasses until the operative eye is ready for a new correction. You may see better in your operative eye without glasses. Over-the-counter reading glasses may be worn to help with near vision. Wearing the wrong strength glasses does not harm the surgery eye.

Light sensitivity: This is very common. If bothersome, sunglasses may be helpful.

Floaters: Sometimes a few floaters (small dark spots) will appear in your vision. A few floaters is not unusual. If they increase in number, become large and prominent, or are associated with flashing lights or vision loss — please call our office to determine if you should be seen.

Glare: You may notice glare or halos in your vision. Arcs of light or shadows may appear briefly in the side vision. These are normal reflections off the lens implant and usually decrease with time.

Our office phone numbers are answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. After hours you will reach the answering service who will connect you with the on-call surgeon.