Delia Worth had both her cataracts removed within two months of each other at our dedicated Eye Unit, which performed approximately 2,900 cataract surgeries in 2022. Delia also had toric lenses inserted to correct astigmatisms which differed in both eyes. Learn how our Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon, Mr Damian Lake, made the world 'a clearer, brighter place’ for Delia.
What symptoms or changes in your vision led you to see a healthcare professional?
“Over the past year I had really struggled with my vision due to the development of cataracts in both of my eyes. Reading and driving became a real problem, so much so that I stopped driving in the dark, which is very limiting.”
“I decided to go to Benenden Hospital for my cataract removal surgery because two years ago I had my gallbladder removed at the hospital and the treatment from start to finish was exemplary. I did also have an appointment at another hospital to discuss my cataract treatment, but they couldn’t offer me the options that Benenden Hospital could, as I required a different type of lens in each eye.”
Were you aware of the available treatment options for cataracts before consulting with an ophthalmologist?
“For my initial consultation, I saw Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon, Mr Lake. He was very informative and friendly and he explained all the various options available to me. I was offered toric lenses to correct severe astigmatism and I decided to have one lens for reading and the other lens for long distance. He carefully explained the risks to me and I was given an informative booklet prior to my surgery.
“I had my first cataract removed in February and my second in March. During the actual operation, I was terrified, I was even shaking. However, Mr Lake and the Eye Unit nurse quickly put me at ease. They explained the procedure step-by-step and this helped me calm down. It was relatively painless, with just some discomfort and pressure, which was to be expected.”
What happens during cataract removal surgery?
Delia would have been awake during her procedure but would have had a local anaesthetic to numb the eye. After the local anaesthetic had taken effect, Mr Lake would have made tiny cuts on the surface of Delia’s eye in order to remove her cloudy lens. The lens is usually broken up using ultrasound waves before it’s removed. The capsule the lens sat in would have been left behind and the new artificial lens would have been placed in this capsule, where it remains permanently.
Our expert Ophthalmic Consultants use computer assisted cataract surgery with Callisto Eye®. This modern microscope can achieve perfect alignment of the toric lenses. This technology allows for faster treatment due to less manual functions and reduces the risk of refractive errors and residual astigmatism.
Find out more about our lens replacement options from our cataract surgery brochure.
What postoperative care instructions were you given?
After cataract surgery, patients generally return home the same day, although they won’t be able to drive themselves. The eye is usually left without stitches and has an eye shield on it to prevent infection. Delia was informed of the aftercare instructions and they discussed the follow-up appointments.
Delia adds: “I was given a chart to help me dispense the right amount of drops needed after the surgery. When I returned home, I was phoned by the Eye Unit staff to check on my wellbeing. I was also provided with a 24-hour helpline if required.”
What were the staff and surroundings like at the hospital?
“Every member of staff, ranging from reception to the people working in the Eye Unit, to the Consultants to the Nurses were friendly, approachable, knowledgeable, and patient.
“Benenden Hospital is set in the stunning countryside with beautifully maintained grounds. There is a light, spacious atrium where you can sit and wait with your partner, or whoever you’ve brought with you. The hospital is super clean, there’s a lovely café where you can get reasonably priced drinks and coffee. All of this helps to put you at ease. I would 100% recommend Benenden Hospital.”
Delia's double cataract success story
Can you describe the changes you’ve experienced?
“In the four months since having both my cataracts removed, it’s been lifechanging. I’ve been able to dispense totally with my lenses and glasses which I’ve worn since the age of 11. I can now drive at night, I can read and I can swim without worrying about getting water in my eyes. The world seems a brighter, clearer place as colours jump out at me. It’s just a miracle!”
Would you recommend Benenden Hospital to someone who is considering cataract surgery?
“Having the cataract surgeries has been the best thing I’ve ever done. There’s nothing to be frightened of and the procedure only took 15 minutes and was nearly painless; 15 minutes to change my life. I recommend Benenden Hospital and its cataract surgery to my friends and family all the time. I can’t stop talking about how good it feels to be able to see clearly after all these years.”
Private cataract surgery in our award-winning Eye Unit
We’re proud to be the number one provider of private cataract surgery in Kent and Sussex* and have 12 Consultant Ophthalmologists who specialise in the procedure. Mr Damian Lake is one of two Consultants delivering the ‘Special Lens Service’, which involves the implantation of multifocal and astigmatism-correcting intraocular lenses.
Find out more about our private eye treatments available through self-pay and private medical insurance, by completing our online enquiry form, contacting us via Livechat or by calling our Private Patient team on 01580 363 158.
*Private Healthcare Information Network 2022
Published on 18 July 2023