About YAG Capsulotomy
Following a cataract procedure, some patients may experience cloudy vision such as when a cataract was present. Though it may seem similar to a cataract, this is actually classified as posterior capsule opacity and occurs when lens epithelial (the cornea’s outer layer of cells) cells grow on the posterior capsule. When posterior capsule opacity develops after a cataract procedure, board-eligible ophthalmologist Dr. Russel Swan may suggest a laser treatment called the YAG capsulotomy in order to fully restore your vision. If you are experiencing cloudy vision after receiving a cataract procedure, contact Vance Thompson Vision in Bozeman, MT to learn more about this innovative treatment option.
Posterior Capsule Opacity
After a cataract is removed, an artificial lens (intraocular lens) is used to replace the eye’s natural lens. The intraocular lens permits light to emit through the retina without it appearing cloudy. The posterior capsule is the part of the eye that holds the new lens into place, while also protecting it. When the posterior capsule is damaged or wears out over time, it may block light from fully extending to the retina, causing cloudy vision.
"I had a PRK surgery done here and had THE best experience! Every staff member is extremely caring, professional, and knowledgeable and they go above and beyond! Dr. Swan texted me the night after my surgery to make sure I was doing ok and answered my questions. They have been very good about working with me as I don’t live in Bozeman and had to travel for my appointments and surgery. When you choose Vance Thompson Vision, you are choosing the best care! Highly recommend!"- K.C. / Google / Aug 23, 2019
"Dr swan, Kim, Susan and others were all amazing. Superior friendly & knowledgeable staff. Took me through the whole process guiding, answering any questions or concerns. Dr Swan put me right at ease from the moment he entered the exam room, greeted me with a firm handshake and welcoming smile. I was nervous about having cataract surgery because I hate anything in my eyes. Everyone assured me they would make me comfortable and they did. I couldn't be any happier with the results. For the first time in nearly 60 years I can see without glasses."- J.R. / Google / Aug 22, 2019
"From the time you walk in to the time you leave, the staff there is 100% committed to your care. The team at VTV sweat the details and it shows. I was in great hands and I cannot recommend them more highly."- A.B. / Facebook / Aug 20, 2019
"Dr Swan and the Bozeman team were incredible for my PRK procedure. Very diligent, helpful, and professional. Plus the equipment was all state-of-the-art. Highly recommend."- C.M. / Google / Aug 05, 2019
"I always knew that Vance Thompson VISION was a world class group of physicians and wonderful staff! On my recent check up in talking with the staff we were visiting and I found out she had been a vet tech before so the conversation went from there and that I had recently lost my sweet dog. And a day later I receive these gorgeous flowers! I’ve never known such a truly caring group 🙏I Will never forget your thoughtful deed🐾🌈"- R.K. / Facebook / Jul 27, 2019
Prior to the procedure, your eyes will be numbed, and your pupils will be dilated using eye drops. During a capsulotomy, the YAG laser will deliver small, quick pulses of energy to the posterior capsule while also passing through the intraocular lens. The laser produces an opening in the posterior capsule that is able to allow light to come through but is small enough to still protect the artificial lens.
Throughout the YAG capsulotomy, you may hear slight clicking sounds and see small flashes of light, but the procedure is usually quick with minimal discomfort. Using the YAG laser also reduces the risk for infection, since no stitches are needed in the eye.
What to Expect
Following your procedure, you will need a responsible adult to drive you home. Most often, patients notice an improvement in their vision immediately after treatment with optimal results occurring within a few hours. You may need to attend follow-up appointments so that your healing process can be evaluated. While they are rare, there are some potential risks that can occur with a YAG capsulotomy procedure, such as a rise in eye pressure for a short period of time, the laser can affect the intraocular lens but may not affect vision, and in very rare cases, the retina can become detached. Prior to your procedure, we will consult with you about the potential risks and help you make an informed decision about your treatment.
With any procedure, complications and unwanted side effects can occur. If you notice cloudy vision following your cataract procedure, it could be a symptom of posterior capsule opacity. Contact our practice in Bozeman, MT to learn more about YAG capsulotomy and let Dr. Swan and our trained eye care professionals help you regain clear vision.