I had cataract surgery about a year and a half ago. They give you a kit- it contains an eye shield, tape, drops- antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, and I THINK I had a dialator drop. YOu take the drops as directed for a couple days before surgery. When you go for surgery, wear comfy clothes, a button-down shirt. They will start an IV, and give you drops and drops and drops. The drops do sting. A lot. They give you a tranquilizer, llike Valium- that's what they gave me- and something thru the IV; I think I had something like Staidol. Once you are quite relaxed and happy, they put a paper cap on your head to keep your hair out of the way- I have quite a lot of hair. Then they put you on a gurney with a padded rack in it to put your head in. It holds your head and neck still. Then they duct tape _(no REALLY_ it was duct tape!)your head- across your forehead to the gurney. When you go into the operating room, they use a wire speculum to hold open your eyelids. They float your eyeball up with water, make an incision in the eye, break up your lens beneath the cornea, suck it out, and place the new lens in. You will feel a cold sensation while all this goes on, you will see the water washing over your eye. Its like looking at a window pane during a rainstorm. The new lens goes into the incision folded up. You will feel a little pressure when it unfolds and is placed. Your eye will feel 'full' for just a few minutes. Then they wheel you out, let you up, and give you a drink of juice or water, maybe some crackers, and send you on your way with the sheild over your eye, and a pair of shades, which should be in the kit you got that you will be told to bring with you the day of surgery. NONE of this hurts- there are no pain nerves in the eyeball. When your eyes hurt, it's usu. the muscles around them, or the muscles in the iris itself or the optic nerve, in my case. I have optic atrophy. You might get a little headache for a couple days, because the eye is dialated, and all that light can get in. The drops are more painful than anything else in cataract surgery. It's all over pretty quick, and only the first one is scary because it is your eye, after all, but it really isn't painful, and you really will be high as a kite and too stoned to care what they do when you go into the OR.I promise!
Because we have Uveitis, we are at very high risk of having a flare because they eye gets irritated a bit during sugery. Your doc will treat this inflammation. Some of us- me included- develop a subcapsular cataract- one that grows BEHIND the lens after this flare, but the doc just pokes a little pinhole in there with a YAG laser. This is done in the office, and it doesn't hurt- it's been described to me as being like watching fireworks, but not at all painful.
I hope this was helpful. It is very stressful waiting for that first surgery. YOu will be instructed to wear the shades all day, and the sheild at night, so you don't rub your eye in your sleep- it can be a bit itchy. Well, that's about all I can say. Keep your head up!
Mike had stiches, but I did not- the doc said it would close up on its own very quickly. I reckon it just depends on the doc.