What Is Laser Cataract Surgery?

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Laser cataract surgery is a procedure for removing a cataract from the eye and replacing the old lens of the eye with a new intraocular lens with a laser instead of traditional cataract surgery. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the use of laser cataract surgery in 2011.

Incisions are made in the eye with the use of the femtosecond laser, which offers better precision and less potential for injury to the eye than a traditional hand-held blade. The laser then breaks up the cataract with less energy than the traditional method, often causing less bleeding. The new lens is then inserted into the eye. Possible drawbacks to laser cataract surgery are its increased expense over traditional surgery and the fact that the procedure takes longer to perform.