skip to main content

Advanced Cataract Surgery 

Cataracts are the leading cause of vision loss among adults age 60 or older and have become increasingly common as our population ages and lives longer. Treatment requires a quick, minimally invasive surgical procedure to remove your cloudy lens and replace it with a new lens implant. Over 3 million cataract surgeries are performed each year in the United States.

Modern cataract surgery has evolved rapidly over the past few years. It is considered one of the safest and most effective medical procedures used today, giving patients more choice in lens options. By combining the most advanced lenses for distance and near vision or astigmatism correction with cataract surgery, patients are regaining the vision they had in their 20s.


  • Convenient and fast outpatient procedure.
  • Quick recovery with patients typically returning to normal activities the following day.
  • Vision that is even better than before the onset of cataracts, with less need for glasses.

View Video

Is Cataract Surgery Right For Me?

While most cataracts are age-related, there are over a dozen different types of cataracts and stages of development that determine whether or not a cataract needs to be removed. Sometimes, simply changing the prescription in glasses, adding a special coating on glasses, or adjusting the tint of the lenses in your eyeglasses will make all the difference. Our physicians share the philosophy that surgery is the last option on the list and will work with you to make an informed decision based on your specific needs. After a thorough eye exam, you and your doctor will discuss if cataract surgery is an option for you. If cataract surgery is deemed the best course of action, you will be given additional information about the procedure that will allow you to make an informed decision about whether to proceed. We want you to have all your questions answered to your satisfaction prior to surgery.

How is Cataract Surgery Performed?

Dr. Samantha Williamson and the team at Baltimore Eye Physicians' perform traditional and laser-assisted cataract surgery. During surgery, the clouded lenses are removed and, in most instances, replaced with an intraocular lens, referred to as IOLs. Today, we are able to offer patients, a variety of options for IOLs to accommodate individual needs.

This method removes the eye’s cloudy lens and replace it with an Intraocular Lens. Incisions in both methods are typically so small they do not require sutures. The team at Baltimore Eye Physicians will talk with you about which type of surgery is best for your specific needs.

View Video

Before Your Surgery

Before your surgery, our team will discuss various types of lens implants with you. How you see after surgery will depend on the type of lens implant used. It is vital that you discuss your lifestyle and vision expectations so that we can determine the right premium lens implant for you.

During Your Surgery

Cataract surgery is relatively “patient-friendly.” It is usually performed as an outpatient procedure requiring only a few minutes. “Phacoemulsification” is the microsurgical technique used. It requires a tiny incision and breaks up the cataract with ultrasound waves.

  • Eye drops are applied for anesthesia.
  • The surgeon makes an incision and uses ultrasound waves to break up the hard, yellow proteins that form the cataract, leaving the lens membrane in place.
  • Next, a soft, flexible synthetic Intraocular Lens (IOL) is inserted into the lens capsule of the eye.
  • The lens is a permanent fixture that helps your eye to focus. You will not be able to feel or sense the implanted lens in any way.

Cataract Surgery. Three eye balls in a row. The first eye has a clouded lens. The second and third each show the Intraocular lens (IOL) implanted in place.

After Your Surgery

Because there are no needles or injections, only a tiny incision, stitches and an eye patch are not required after the surgery. In most cases, the incision is so small that the eye heals rapidly, with little or no discomfort, and the patient experiences a quick visual recovery. Patients can typically return to normal activities within a few days. The following video describes some symptoms patients may experience directly after their cataract surgery.

View Video

Types of Intraocular Lenses (IOL)

Dr. Samantha Williamson will work with you to decide when your cataracts must be removed and which type of IOL is best for your visual needs. Baltimore Eye Physicians uses four types of lenses, each designed for a specific corrective function. 

During the first 25 years that lens implants were used for vision correction, the goal was to correct distance or far vision as best as possible (single-focus). The very latest in premium multifocal and toric lenses can improve vision for various distances all at once. This means not having to wear glasses following your procedure and regaining your important reading vision:

  • Light Adjustable Lens: The RxSight™ Light Adjustable Lens is the first and only intraocular lens (IOL) that can be customized after cataract surgery. Baltimore Eye Physicians is proud to be one of the only practices in the Baltimore region to provide this cutting edge technology to our cataract surgery patients. The Light Adjustable Lens is made of a special photosensitive material that can be adjusted in response to ultraviolet (UV) light. This optimization is done by your eye doctor in the weeks following lens implantation through a series of non-invasive light treatments that take only a few minutes each. You will have the unique ability to adjust and preview your vision until it meets your personal desires and lifestyle requirements. The Light Adjustable Lens delivers superior vision outcomes that non-adjustable IOLs cannot match. Click here to learn more about the RxSight™ Light Adjustable Lens.
  • Multifocal Lens: Designed to give patients the best distance and near vision with less dependence on glasses after surgery. Baltimore Eye Physicians uses the AcrySof® IQ PanOptix® Trifocal Lens, which is the first and only trifocal lens available in the United States. Over 100 million lenses and counting have been implanted. And 99% of people surveyed with the PanOptix Lens would choose the same lens again. Compared to the older "monofocal" intraocular lenses (IOLs), the AcrySof® IQ PanOptix®  provides an extended depth of focus, producing enhanced near and intermediate vision to reverse the effects of presbyopia. The PanOptix Lens enhances quality as well as range, so your vision will be as sharp and vivid as it is complete. We will discuss your day, night and reading vision expectations following surgery.
  • Toric Lens (Astigmatism): Toric lenses deliver clear distance vision with less dependence on prescription glasses for patients with moderate to high astigmatism. Near and intermediate vision will still require glasses.
  • Single-Focus Lens (Basic): The single-focus lens is inexpensive and effective in clearing vision. If you receive a single-focus lens, the focus will be set for distance and you will regain your ability to see objects that are far away. After surgery, patients will likely need to wear corrective lenses, especially for activities like reading and driving.

Our high-tech IOL Master machine allows our doctors to get fast, accurate, non-invasive (no-contact and no drops are needed) measurements of the eye length and surface curvature, necessary for your appropriate intraocular lens calculation. Instrumentation in the operating room includes the ALCON Infinity Vision System featuring the very latest OZil® technology which improves the overall effectiveness, control and safety of cataract surgery.

View Video

Why Choose Baltimore Eye Physicians for Cataract Surgery?

It's simple - experienced surgeons reduce risks.

Cataract removal is one of the most common operations performed in the United States. It also is one of the safest and most effective types of surgery. In about 99 percent of cases, people who have cataract surgery have better vision afterward.

Baltimore Eye Physicians has performed more than 10,000 cataract surgeries, and currently performs as many as 1,000 cataract surgeries per year. Serious complications with cataract surgery are extremely rare, however, like any surgical procedure, it does have some risks such as infection, retinal tear or detachment. Going to an eye specialist, such as the experienced ophthalmologists at Baltimore Eye Physicians, can significantly minimize the risks involved with cataract surgery.

Learn More About Our Cataract Surgeon

Dr. Williamson joined our practice in the Fall of 2020 and has extensive experience in cataract surgery, including complex cataracts, secondary lens implantation and advanced lens technology. Additionally, she clinically and surgically manages a wide range of corneal disease and corneal transplant procedures. She is an excellent surgeon and her background, credentials and experience further support the superior outcomes we see from her daily.


Medicare and most insurance plans cover the costs for cataract surgery with single-focus lenses, with an additional charge for multifocal and toric lenses. Patients find the extra expense for well worth the exchange for freedom from glasses or contacts.

Financing is also available for a portion of the premium lens charge. Our staff will review all of this information with you before your surgery.

We offer several payment options to suit your needs:

  • Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA): You can save up to 30% by using tax-free dollars to pay for your cataract surgery. Many employers offer an FSA or Health Savings Account.
  • Financing: Baltimore Eye Physicians is pleased to offer 12-month interest-free and extended payment plans through ALPHAEON CREDIT or up to 24 months interest-free through CareCredit
  • Credit Cards: Many patients opt to pay for their procedure using a personal credit card. This may be a good option, especially if you have a card that carries a low interest rate or offers points and other rewards.

Contact us today to talk about the best financing options for you.

Quick Cataract FAQs

What Is a Cataract?

A cataract is the clouding that develops in the eye’s crystalline lens. As the leading cause of vision loss among adults age 60 or older, cataracts impair vision, making everyday activities increasingly difficult.

Is Cataract Surgery Effective?

Yes! Many patients report vision that is even better than before they developed cataracts. Modern cataract surgery is considered one of the most effective medical procedures used today. And these results are permanent. Once removed, the cataract won’t reoccur.

Over time, the lens implant can develop a "film" behind it, which can again cause symptoms of blurred vision. A simple laser capsulotomy procedure can be performed to create an opening in the film in order to restore normal vision. Laser capsulotomy does not require going to the operating room nor does it involve any incision into the eye. It only takes a few minutes and is painless. 

Will I Need Glasses After Cataract Surgery?

The decision to have cataract surgery is an important one that only you can make. The goal of any vision restoration procedure is to improve your vision. The newer technology available today enhances surgical outcomes. With small incision surgery and custom lenses, 95 percent of patients require no distance glasses following surgery. When bifocal or Restor lenses are utilized at the time of surgery, dependency on glasses is dramatically reduced. However, results vary from patient to patient, and we cannot guarantee you will have the results you desire.

Where is Cataract Surgery Performed?

Your cataract procedure is performed on an outpatient basis and takes only a few minutes In most cases patients can resume daily activities such as driving or reading, almost immediately.

Does Insurance Cover Cataract Surgery?

Yes. Medicare and most insurance plans cover approved cataract surgeries. There is an additional charge for advanced technology lenses. Our staff will review all of this information with you.

Our Services