If you’re on a waiting list to have cataracts removed, you could be missing out on precious times with family and friends. But there’s no need to wait to enjoy life to the full again. With Benenden Hospital’s specialist cataract care for private patients, you can enjoy clearer sight and improved vision without delay.
Most cataracts are caused by natural changes in the lens brought on by age. To begin with, you may notice that your sight just isn’t quite right, and that’s because cataracts tend to develop slowly. Gradually your sight becomes cloudier, making it harder to see. Lights can seem to glare, and you may notice that colours look different.
Most people choose to have their cataracts removed when the change in their vision starts to impact on everyday life. But its totally up to you – it’s reassuring to know that a delay in treatment won’t make the treatment less effective.
First, you’ll have a comprehensive pre-operative examination which will cover your general health as well as a detailed assessment of your eyes.
Cataracts are treated by removing the cloudy lens and replacing it with an artificial plastic lens (an intraocular implant). It sounds complicated, but it’s actually a simple, day case procedure, so you won’t even need to stay overnight. Surgery is performed under drop-applied local anaesthetic, and you’ll probably spend no longer than 2-3 hours at the hospital.
Following treatment, and for your complete peace of mind, you’ll have 24/7 telephone access to a qualified specialist ophthalmic consultant.
Benenden Hospital is established as a centre of excellence for cataract surgery. We’re one of the biggest providers of cataract care in the South East, with a team of highly experienced eye surgeons who specialise in cataract surgery.
Our surgeons carry out over 2,000 procedures a year, and our clinical outcomes are among the best in the UK. More than 99.6% of operations are completed with no complications compared with the national figure of 97%*. And in the half percent of cases where a complication occurred, all were satisfactorily resolved.
It all means that when you come to us for your cataract surgery, you can be confident that you couldn’t be in the hands of a more capable and conscientious team.
*Source: The RNIB
And there’s another great advantage of having your cataract surgery with us: you can choose to improve your range of vision at the same time, by choosing to upgrade to special lenses. There are three types available, and our specialist refractive optometrist will assess you and explain the options.
Standard monofocal lenses
Monofocal is the standard lens used in the NHS. The lens provides one focal point, so you can choose to have either clear distance vision or the near vision needed for reading, etc. Depending on your choice, you’ll need reading glasses or distance glasses after the surgery.
Multifocal lenses provide a full range of vision: distance, intermediate and near, with most patients finding they can do without glasses after surgery. There are some compromises with these lenses which will be discussed at your assessment.
Toric lenses for astigmatism
If you have astigmatism of more than 0.75D, Toric lenses can help you achieve the best possible vision. They’re available as monofocal or multifocal lenses.
You can access Benenden Hospital in a number of ways: as a self-funding or privately insured patient; as a Benenden member; or as an NHS patient, through the NHS e-referral system. Remember that our cataract removal service is only available to patients who are 19 years of age or older.
Self-funded or paying through medical insurance?
With a GP referral or an opticians report, you can book directly with the Hospital. As a private patient at Benenden Hospital, your surgery can be arranged without delay. It’s sometimes possible to have your initial consultation and treatment on the same day. Learn more about our cataract surgery service and our costs by calling us on 01580 242 521.
A Benenden member?
Benenden members will need a GP referral and must contact member services for authorisation before seeking treatment on 0800 414 8100. Benenden members who opt for a special lens only pay the additional cost incurred for the lens and additional treatment as cataract treatment with the standard lens is covered by treatment authorised as part of their membership.
Seeking treatment through the NHS?
You can request that your GP refers you to Benenden Hospital direct via NHS e-Referral service, by going online to www.chooseandbook.nhs.uk or by calling 0845 6088 888 requesting Benenden Hospital. Please note that only the standard monofocal lenses are available as an NHS patient.