Your vision is blurry and you see flashes of light that you cannot explain. How much does eye surgery cost if you seek treatment quickly?
How much does eye surgery cost if you have other vision disturbances fixed at the same time?
With luck, everyone grows old. While each of us ages differently, we share signs of aging like graying hair and fine lines. Among the various age-related changes, cataracts may be the most common. A cataract is the clouding of your eye’s lens. While smoking, diabetes and family history can make you predisposed to developing cataracts, age is the biggest risk factor. In fact, according to the National Eye Institute, more than half of people in America will develop cataracts by the age of 80. Most cataracts grow so slowly that you hardly notice changing your eyeglass prescription more often, headlight glare that makes night driving difficult, problems seeing due to daytime glare, and increased blurring. Your regular checkup can reveal cataracts, and your doctor may monitor their growth. If the cataract is causing symptoms or is interfering with your daily activities, your doctor may refer you to an ophthalmologist. Surprisingly, there are four types of cataracts. Treatments for other eye conditions can trigger cataracts, as can diabetes and steroid use. Traumatic cataracts appear after an eye injury. Those that are present at birth or develop during childhood are congenital cataracts, while radiation triggers radiation cataracts. Because they grow slowly, doctors will first help you adjust to vision changes and prescribe special glasses, and you might invest in anti-glare task lighting for your home. Once a cataract is so large that it interferes with watching television or doing chores, you’ll need cataract surgery and various factors influence how much does eye surgery cost.
While surgery may frighten you, it can be an opportunity to have several vision problems treated at once. Doctors can perform cataract surgery one of two ways: with laser guidance and without. In conventional cataract surgery, the doctor manually makes a tiny incision in your cornea with a very thin surgical blade. Then, the doctor uses a phacoemulsification machine to break up the cataract. The doctor then sucks out the debris and pieces of the natural lens before inserting the new lens, which stays in place without stitches. The surgery is performed as an outpatient procedure, taking about an hour per eye with the patient going home afterward. Whereas the doctor’s hand makes the incision during conventional cataract surgery, the laser makes incisions during laser-assisted cataract surgery. It is important to remember that you may still need glasses after cataract surgery, even if you did not need them before. For this reason, you may choose to have other vision problems fixed at the same time. A new lens clears your vision, but premium lenses can also correct other vision problems, ending your need for glasses. In the United States, the cost of cataract surgery is covered by Medicare since most candidates are older than 65. Private health insurance companies will cover cataract surgery cost when it is medically necessary to preserve your vision. Otherwise, health insurance companies consider this an elective surgery if your vision is not threatened, leaving you responsible for payments. When private insurance covers laser eye surgery cost for cataracts, you may also pay for premium lenses or advanced procedures not directly related to removing your cataract from your own funds.
Your out-of-pocket costs may include an EKG, comprehensive eye exam, prescription eyeglasses and anesthesia. Asking your insurance company, “how much does eye surgery cost” may not reveal these expenses. Additionally, your doctor may correct your other vision disturbances during surgery to ease your dependence on glasses. Your health insurance might not cover the additional laser eye surgery cost of special lenses. You may also be responsible for the antibiotic and anti-inflammatory eye drops your doctor may prescribe after surgery. Without private health insurance or Medicare, the average cost of cataract surgery in 2015 was $3,542 per eye. Your cataract surgery cost would have risen by around $2,178 an eye with a lens correcting farsightedness or presbyopia. Correcting astigmatism added approximately $1,310 an eye to your out-of-pocket expenses, and laser eye surgery cost is usually higher than conventional cataract surgery, costing $4,365 in some places. Health insurance companies limit their coverage to the surgery and those items directly involved because unless you are blind, you can use reading glasses to correct your farsightedness and they are less expensive than surgery. In some instances, the doctor or the surgical center may have in-house financing or refer you to a medical loan company to help with the expenses.
Recovery from cataract surgery is normally swift and uncomplicated. After surgery, your doctor will have covered your eye with a protective shield and will have told you when to remove it. Blurred vision is common during the first few days while you adjust to the new lens. Your eyes may be bloodshot from surgical trauma, but that will disappear as your eye heals. For the best experience, avoid driving the first day after surgery, be careful while walking around, avoid heavy lifting, protect your eye from dust and the wind, and don’t rub your eye. You should be able to do computer work, bathe, and watch television within a few hours of surgery.
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