Cataract Eye Surgery in both eyes
I had a cataract surgery on both eyes. I have severe flashes on one eye during night time driving.
What is the cause and what is the cure?
Thanks for your Question
Eye flashes after cataract surgery can occur mainly in a complicated cataract eye surgery that ended up with vitreous loss during the surgery.
The natural lens inside the eye or the cataract is surrounded by a thin capsule and this capsule acts as a barrier to prevent the movement of the gel like substance called the vitreous from the back of the eye to the front part of the eye.
During cataract surgery, the surgeon will make a small opening in the front part of the capsule so that he can remove the cataract but he will keep the back part of the capsule intact. Sometimes during cataract surgery, the back part of the capsule is ruptured and vitreous starts to move from the back of the eye to the front part of the eye through this rupture.
This vitreous should be removed during the surgery. Any remnants of the vitreous in the front part of the eye can cause several complications. Vitreous is attached to the internal surface of the retina.When the vitreous is moved it can pull the retina with it which is manifested as flashes of light.
Sometimes, complete detachment of the vitreous from the retina can occur, which is a good thing but sometimes, the detachment is incomplete and parts of the vitreous still attached to the retina and cause traction on the retina. This traction might lead to retinal tears or holes or retinal detachment which required urgent surgical intervention.
Patients see these flashes of lights during the daylight and also during the night. Some patients might experience flashes of light only during the night only which is a different issue that is caused by the refraction of lights from the edge of the artificial lens implanted inside the eye during cataract surgery.
The intraocular lens has central optical zone and peripheral optical part. The peripheral optical part is hidden behind the pupil. During the night, your pupil is dilated more than during the daylight and more lights are coming through to the back of the eye. Lights that are passed though the peripheral part of the lens are refracted more than those pass through the central part of the lens. This peripheral refracted lights can cause flashes of lights and halos around lights in night driving.
I would recommend that you visit your eye doctor to have a full ocular and fundus exam and to rule out any vitreous in the anterior chamber and any traction on the retina.