Complication from Cataract Surgery

by Steven
(San Diego)

One month after cataract surgery (Right Eye only), noticed that vision in that eye was becomming blurry. Two months later, noticed that when reading a line of smaller type, the line appeared to be somewhat wavy. Was told this was a side effect of cataract surgery. That waviness was caused by fluid pressure on the macula that was forcing or bending rods and cones out of proper alignment. For example, when typing this, I am keeping my right eye closed... in order to clearly see the screen and minimize visual confusion.

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May 21, 2022
wavy vision after cataract surgery
by: Anonymous

I have the same problem with distorted vision after cataract surgery. I was getting shots for Macular edema. They did several, finally going to steroids. telling me a side effect of steroid shots was cataracts, they were right. Had surgery almost 3 weeks ago and I can now see fairly well in that eye but have distorted vision at a distance of 5 or 6 feet mostly. Hoping this will clear up with time. Not sure how much the ME is behind this or if it will not get better until that fully heals.

Nov 23, 2019
Wavy lines after cataract surgery
by: Melody

I had cataract surgery in April 2019. I can no longer see straight lines in both eyes but I don't notice it when I read. I only notice it when I look at a straight line. Right eye makes the line bend up, left eye it bends down.
I do have dry age related Macular degeneration in my right eye but not my left. It is not yet affecting my vision in either eye and its not wet.
I also have streaks of light on my right eye at night, peripheral vision. Plus I have floaters in the right eye. Lights in stores also affect my eyes in a halo at times.
My distance vision is great and I use 175 readers for computer and reading.
I also have occasional blurriness in both eyes peripherally when my eyes are tired.
In short, I miss my old eyes.

Aug 21, 2019
Cataract surgery
by: Anonymous

After 2 Yrs Cataract Surgery/Have a Wavy Line in middle of eye!!! Was told like Oh Well!!!! Why don’t Surgery personnel own Up??

Feb 15, 2018
wavy lines after cataract surgery
by: Emma

I have the same problem the day after cataract surgery. The surgeon said that it has something to do with the cornea a ripple hence the neurons in the brain cannot convey the message correctly hence the wavy lines. I do hope this goes away after a while??? I am scheduled to get my right I done and I am scared? What should I do. I also have to close my eyes in order to send this reply.
Surgery done on Wed Jan 24th 2018. Next scheduled to be done on Wed Feb 21st 2018 i AM VERY NERVOUS SHOULD i CANCEL??

Oct 09, 2017
Wavy text after cataract surgery
by: Sheesh

I have had the same problem, -- wavy text -- which started a month after cataract surgey. Consulted 3 retina specialists, did 2 OCTs which showed nothing.
Pain and waviness stil there after 2 months. Tried steroid drops also, no effect

May 05, 2012
Waviness in vision after cataract surgery
by: Brian Ang

Dear Steven

I have been thinking long and hard about your symptoms after cataract surgery. Usually when there is blurring and waviness after surgery, it indicates a problem at the macula, which is the sensitive part of the retina that is needed to see fine detail.

The commonest problem is cystoid macular edema (CME), where fluid accumulates within the retinal layer at your macula. This distorts the architecture of the cones, thereby resulting in the symptoms you describe. This usually resolves after a few weeks. Treatment with eye drops (both steroid and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications) tends to hasten recovery. For my patients who develop CME postoperatively, I prescribe prednisolone (steroid) and ketorolac (non-steroidal) eye drops 4 times daily for 1 month. This usually sorts everything out.

If you already have early age-related macular degeneration (AMD) or diabetic retinopathy, having cataract surgery can cause activation of these diseases. As a result, fluid leaks into the macula and also cause the symptoms you describe. In this situation, a fluorescein angiogram dye test will be needed to determine the origin and extent of the leak. You may then require retinal laser treatment or eye injections with anti-VEGF medications (such as bevacizumab or ranibizumab).

As far as I know, pressure on the macula from the vitreous is unlikely to cause the symptoms that you have described.

Good luck!


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