Your step-by-step guide of your surgery appointment
Here’s some detailed information about what to expect during your cataract surgery appointment – all of the SpaMedica team are here to support you, make you feel at ease and make your surgery day as stress-free as possible.
1. Welcome – You’ll receive a big smile and warm welcome from one of our friendly reception team. They’ll check you in and take you to the patient waiting area. You’ll be offered complimentary tea, coffee and biscuits for you and your family/friend/carer.
2. Arranging pick up – Our reception team will ask for contact details of the person who will be picking you up after your surgery and we’ll give them a ring when you’re ready to go home. Your family/friend/carer is also welcome to wait in the reception area once you are called through to the surgical ward – this is normally about a 3 hour wait.
3. Nurse pre-surgery check – You’ll be called through to the surgical ward where you’ll be greeted by one of our skilled and friendly nurses, who will spend about 15 minutes with you. They’ll check everything is OK for your surgery to go ahead. An arrow will be drawn above the eye you are having surgery on – don’t worry, this is standard procedure for all surgical operations. The nurse will make sure you understand what will happen next and you can ask any questions you may have to make sure you are happy with everything. A tiny pellet is then placed in your eye – this is used to dilate your pupil. If required, the nurse will provide sedative medication before putting the pellet in your eye (most patients don’t need this).
4. Surgical ward – the nurse will show you through to the surgical ward. It’s very important for your pupil to be fully dilated for surgery and so there will be up to 45 minutes waiting time on the surgical ward to allow the pupil to fully dilate.
5. Pre-surgery – One of the surgery team will call you through to the surgery preparation room to get you ready for surgery. The nurse will remove the small pellet from your eye and administer anaesthetic drops to numb your eye. We give you a couple pieces of protective clothing to pop on before surgery – a cap and shoe covers. If you wear a hearing aid, we ask that this is removed at this point and the nursing team will look after it and give it back to you straight after your surgery.
6. Consultant pre-surgery check – Your consultant ophthalmologist will check through your details with you, discuss your surgery and what will happen next. Again, you can ask the consultant any questions you may have and they’ll make sure you’re OK with everything before taking you through to surgery.
7. Your cataract surgery
8. Surgery all done – take a deep breath and smile!
9. Post-cataract surgery check – you’ll spend 5 minutes with one of our nurses following surgery to check you’re OK and talk you through your post-surgery care at home. You’ll be given a booklet with lots of useful information, dos and don’ts, and advice about what to do when you’re back home. A very important part of post-surgery care is your eye drops – these help to prevent infection and reduce any swelling. The nurse will give you a bottle of eye drops to take with you. These are to be used four times a day over three weeks following surgery, but NOT on the day of surgery.
10. Cataract surgery recovery time – you’ll need about 10 to 30 minutes following your surgery to rest back in the hospital reception. We recommend having a hot drink and a biscuit and these will be offered to you while you wait.
11. Time to go home – we’ll call the contact you gave us to organise a lift home, if they’re not already waiting for you in the reception area. If you have organised a lift on our SpaMedica minibus, you’ll be booked in with the driver, who will come and get you when the bus is ready to go.