Cataract Surgery - Medical Negligence Lawyers – Compensation Claims

LAWYER HELPLINE: 1800 633 090

Our medical negligence lawyers have solicitors offices situated in Adelaide, Canberra, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney, Brisbane and Darwin.

According to the World Health Organisation the highest incidence of medical negligence in the developed world occurs in Australia. If you have been injured by a healthcare professional including a doctor, dentist, nurse or technician and would like to speak to a medical negligence law firm without further obligation, just use the helpline. If you have a viable compensation claim a medical negligence lawyer who deals exclusively in personal injury claims will speak to you. Our personal injury lawyers offer free advice and information on how best to preserve your legal right to receive compensation as a result of injuries caused by medical negligence. Merely speaking to one our our lawyers does not commit you to dealing with our lawyers nor will you receive any bill for the initial advice that you receive from us. Our lawyers telephone advice is given without charge and without further obligation. Do yourself justice and call our specialist personal injury law firm today.

What is a Cataract

If you have a cataract, you have clouding within the lens inside the eye. Vision loss occurs and it can’t be fixed with LASIK or corrective lenses. Fortunately, there is surgery that can correct cataracts and will restore the vision to at or near normal. You might not even need eyeglasses. Many cataracts are associated with getting older. It is estimated that 2 million Australians over the age of forty or 17 per cent have at least one cataract. About 5 per cent of all of these people have already had surgery to remove cataracts. Cataract surgery is the best way to treat cataracts which are not complicated by macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy.

With cataract surgery, there is a cloudy lens within the eye that needs to be removed with an artificial eye placed in its placed to allow for normal vision. Cataract surgery is an outpatient surgery so that you go into the surgery centre in the morning and leave at some point later in the day with no reason to have a stay at the hospital overnight. In the most modern forms of the surgery, an ultrasound is used to break up the old lens, with pieces of it then carefully removed from the eye. This procedure is known as phacoemulsification. It allows for faster healing with fewer complications.

After the phacoemulsification, an artificial clear lens is placed behind the pupil and the iris, exactly where the old cloudy lens was located. The incision is then closed and a shield that protects the eye is taped over the eye for use in the first several days. Laser cataract surgery has recently been developed that reduces the degree to which an incision is required. Laser assisted cataract surgery is considered safe but increases the cost of surgery. This is because the laser used in this type of surgery can cost upwards of $500,000 and each individual surgery is costly.


Cataract surgery is considered safe and successful in most cases, but there are complications. Three million cataract procedures are done each year with a 98 per cent success rate. In a study of Medicare patients, the success rate was 99.5 per cent, increased by the new technology involved in doing cataract surgery. Fortunately, most complications are mild enough to be treated medically rather than surgically.

A common complication of cataract surgery is called posterior capsule opacity or posterior capsule opacification. During the surgery, the surgeon notes a clear membrane surrounding the lens called a lens capsule. Every attempt is made to keep the lens capsule intact. The new lens is carefully placed back into the lens capsule and the vision should be very clear. In about 20 percent of cases, the posterior capsule gets cloudy during recovery because epithelial cells have grown on the capsule. Vision can be worse than before surgery.

Post Operative

Surgery on cataracts last about fifteen minutes but your entire stay at the surgical centre is about an hour and a half because of preoperative and postoperative care, including instructions. You’ll need a driver to drive you until you have a vision test that clears you for driving.

Eye drops will be prescribed for you to use several times a day for a few weeks following the procedure. The protective eye shield is used or napping or sleeping for as long as a week after having cataract surgery. You will need sunglasses to protect your eyes after the surgery. There may be some redness of the eye and blurred vision in the weeks after the procedure.

Avoid the following after your cataract procedure:

  • Any kind of strenuous activity.
  • Lifting greater than 10 kilograms.
  • Bending over or exercising in ways that can stress the eye.
  • Water splashing in your eye that might cause infection.
  • Activities that expose the eye to dirt and grime.

Follow the directions of the ophthalmologist in order to maximize healing. Call your eye doctor if you have blurry vision or excessive pain in the eye. If both eyes need cataract replacement, they should be scheduled several weeks apart.

Lawyers Shaking Hands

LAWYER HELPLINE: 1800 633 090