Is It Normal to Have Dry Eyes After Cataract Surgery?


Cataract surgery is a common and usually safe treatment. Nevertheless, like all surgeries, it may cause some complications. This consists of dry eye, which takes place when your eyes don’t generate adequate tears, or if the tears on the surface of your eye evaporate as well quickly.

It’s common to have dry eyes after cataract surgery. For example, in a 2019 study, 42 percent of participants that had cataract surgery established dry eye signs.

A 2017 study on 433 people discovered that dry eye was a negative effects after 55.7 percent of cataract surgeries.

Usually, post-cataract surgery dry eye is temporary. Still, it can be unpleasant, as it typically causes signs like eye irritability and blurred vision.

Keep reading to learn why dry eye creates after cataract surgery, along with solutions and also treatments for soothing this condition.

What Causes Dry Eyes After Cataract Surgery?

There are several reasons dry eye typically develops after cataract surgery.

The primary factor involves the tear film on your eyes. The tear film is a layer of liquid that covers the surface of your eye. It’s made of 3 layers, consisting of an external lipid layer.

The lipid layer functions to stabilize the tear film. This quits tears from evaporating, which keeps the eye surface smooth and lubricated.

Cataract surgery can make the lipid layer thinner. Because of this, the tear film ends up being unstable, resulting in dry eyes.

Dry eyes after cataract surgery may additionally be associated with:

Information verified by the team.
  • Corneal nerve damages. Corneal nerves are involved in tear production. If the surgery harms a corneal nerve, it might lead to lowered blinking and also tear manufacturing, leading to dryness.
  • Light exposure. During cataract surgery, your specialist will utilize a microscope that has a bright light. The light might lower goblet cells in your eyes, which are accountable for lubricating the eye.
  • Inflammation. Inflammation is a typical response after you’ve had surgery, consisting of cataract surgery. In this situation, inflammation in your eye can lower tear manufacturing.
  • Medicated eye drops. After surgery, you’ll likely need to utilize medicated eye drops to take care of discomfort as well as swelling. The pain relievers, corticosteroids, and chemicals in these eye drops could decrease healing, which can get worse dry eye.

Additionally, if you already had dry eyes prior to surgery, the procedure might aggravate your symptoms.

Various other danger aspects that might increase your risk of dry eyes after cataract surgery consist of:

  • being older
  • having underlying medical conditions
  • utilizing particular drugs, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), after surgery

What Are The Symptoms?

Dry eyes can take place when your eyes don’t produce adequate tears. This can cause signs such as:

  • eye pain
  • an experience of burning in the eyes
  • enhanced eye level of sensitivity to wind as well as light
  • feeling like something remains in your eye
  • fuzzy vision

Are There Home Remedies That Can Help Alleviate Dry Eyes?

If you have a moderate situation of dry eye, there are natural home remedy that might enhance your symptoms.

Dry Eye Remedies

  • Artificial tears. Artificial tears are eye drops that lubricate your eyes. You can obtain them at the pharmacy without a prescription.
  • Sunglasses. Using sunglasses outside will safeguard your eyes from the sunlight and wind, which can intensify dry eyes.
  • Blinking usually. Try to blink typically, specifically when you’re looking at computer system displays or reading. This can help keep your eyes lubricated.
  • Keep hydrated. Dehydration can worsen your symptoms, so it is necessary to consume alcohol a lot of water throughout the day.
  • Use a humidifier. Dry air can add to dry eyes. A humidifier, which includes moisture to the air, can help reduce dry indoor conditions.
  • Nutritional supplements. Ask a doctor about supplements for dry eyes. Some nutrients, such as omega-3 fats and also vitamin D, might help relieve inflammation in the eye.

Treatment For Dry Eyes

If you create severe dry eye signs after cataract surgery, you may call for medical treatment. Based on your signs and degree of eye dryness, an eye doctor may prescribe the adhering to treatments:

  • Cyclosporine eye drops. Cyclosporine may help reduce inflammation in the eye’s surface after cataract surgery.
  • Lifitegrast eye drops. Lifitegrast can also help decrease inflammation. It’s made use of for serious cases of dry eye.
  • Punctal plugs. Punctal plugs are put into your tear ducts to quit tear drainage.

It is necessary to bear in mind that prescription dry eye medication might take weeks or months to work. So, you’ll still need to proceed artificial tears when you start taking prescription medication.

When Should You See a Doctor?

After cataract surgery, you’ll typically have regular checkups with an eye doctor. These checkups will certainly allow the doctor to check your progression and try to find signs of complications.

Make an appointment to see an eye doctor in between your normal checkups if you experience:

  • worsening eye dryness
  • extreme pain
  • vision modifications
  • signs of an eye infection, such as inflammation
  • an extreme itchy or gritty feeling
  • swelling in the eye that doesn’t vanish or worsens

The Bottom Line

It prevails to develop dry eyes after cataract surgery. The factor for this is because the treatment can interrupt the tear film, which lubricates the surface of your eye. Cataract surgery may additionally cause inflammation and also nerve damages, which can intensify your signs and symptoms.

Generally, dry eye due to cataract surgery is short-lived. The signs of dry eye are usually worse during the first week and afterwards enhance within a month of the surgery. However if your dry eyes persist, or if your vision changes, be sure to follow up with an eye doctor.

Ali Gadimov
Health Recovery Tips