Refractive Cataract Surgery DC


Brusco Vision Proudly Offers Refractive Cataract Surgery in Washington, D.C. and the DMV

Have you been told you have cataracts? If so, now is the perfect opportunity to have your vision corrected and finally be rid of the burden of wearing glasses, readers, bifocals, and trifocals. As you grow older — and wiser, of course — you may find your eyes are no longer able to function the same as they did years ago. If you’re in the DC area we can help you turn back the clock! Everyone will eventually develop cataracts (a cloudy natural lens). Fortunately, it can be replaced with a lens that will correct your vision, making readers, bifocals and trifocals mostly unnecessary.

What is a Cataract?

The human lens is a true evolutionary marvel. When you are young, the natural lens is very flexible and allows us to autofocus on near and far objects and everything in between, much like the zoom function in a camera. However, as we get older not only does the lens start to become rigid and lose its flexibility, but it also loses its clarity and becomes yellow and cloudy – this is called a cataract. Cataracts block and scatter light. Light scattering results in glare and halos (especially at night), as well as in a reduction of visual acuity, quantity, and visual perception of color. Although it’s not fun to get older in these types of ways, we can help!

What is Refractive Cataract Surgery?

Refractive Cataract Surgery is an advanced treatment that offers you a whole new world of improved vision beyond what traditional cataract surgery can offer. It’s an additional level of advanced care that brings together the latest technological innovations in laser eye surgery to help you obtain the best vision your eyes are capable of seeing.

How Does Refractive Cataract Surgery Work?

During the procedure, your cloudy lens (cataract) is replaced by a new artificial lens called an intraocular lens (IOL). The cataract is lightly removed by an ultrasound device, and then the IOL is gently added to your eye. The advanced technology intraocular lenses bend incoming light through your pupil to focus it perfectly onto the retina, similar to how a contact lens works on the surface of the eye. Unlike contact lenses, the IOL is maintenance-free. It never dries out or gets dirty. You don’t have to put it in every morning or worry about it getting lost. And you can’t develop an allergy to it over time. Patients tell us they do not feel the new lens or notice it’s there, and it’s not noticeable to others. Unless you share it with others (and we hope you do), only your physician, Dr. Brusco, will be aware that refractive cataract surgery has taken place. The new lens will not alter the outward appearance of your eye, but it does drastically improve your vision. We offer different lens options for intraocular lenses. These lens implants can be customized to meet your specific visual needs and eliminate the need to wear glasses or readers.

Cataract surgery is a procedure that will change the way you see the world, every waking moment, for the rest of your life. Don’t go to someone who won’t invest the time in getting to know your eyes inside and out.
- Michael Brusco, MD FACS

Benefits of Refractive Cataract Surgery

Refractive Cataract Surgery eliminates your cataracts, thereby improving and helping to stabilize your vision.

Corrects both near and far vision.

Reduces any astigmatism.

Reduces your dependency on reading glasses and bifocals.

Permanent solution that lasts a lifetime.

When Should I Consider Cataract Surgery?

This is an individual choice only you can make. In general, cataract surgery is usually recommended when people feel their quality of life is affected, and their ability to perform normal activities (driving, reading, or sports) is compromised. When cataract symptoms begin, you may be able to cope temporarily with a new prescription, stronger bifocals, higher magnification, different lighting, or other visual aids. When age-related vision changes begin to affect your quality of life, we recommend that you schedule a comprehensive evaluation (ANOVA) to discuss your options. For many patients who have surgery, it means no more glasses, no more cataracts, and no more missing out on life’s beautiful moments.

Is Refractive Cataract Surgery Safe?

Yes. Intraocular lens surgery, and the surgical techniques involved, were first performed in 1949 but has been popular since the 1980s. The ophthalmology field has come a long way since then, and refractive cataract surgery is the most advanced iteration of this proven vision correction procedure involving a foldable IOL with updated technology. Over 3 million cataract procedures are performed in the United States annually. We are simply taking an already safe and proven procedure and making it better.

Refractive Cataract Surgery vs Basic Cataract Surgery

Refractive cataract surgery is the most advanced iteration of this proven vision correction procedure involving a foldable IOL with updated technology.

Refractive Cataract Surgery

Basic Cataract Surgery

Who is a Candidate for Cataract Surgery?

Cataracts are a Natural Part of Aging—But You Don’t Have to Live With It

Refractive cataract surgery in Washington DC and the DMV is recommended when your vision begins to affect your quality of life or interfere with your ability to perform daily activities. Some indications of a cataract include: Clouded, blurred, or dim vision, increasing difficulty with vision at night, fading or yellowing of colors, double vision in a single eye, sensitivity to light and glare, halos around lights, difficulty reading in dim light, frequent changes in glasses or contact lens prescriptions.

Get Better Visual Outcomes with Refractive Cataract Surgery

The good news is that you don’t need to live with the inconveniences caused by your cataracts. Thanks to incredible advances in technology and science, we can get better visual outcomes and a broader range of vision with refractive cataract surgery. The cataract is removed and replaced with an artificial intraocular lens (IOL) to correct vision loss due to nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), astigmatism, presbyopia, or cataracts. Not only is vision greatly improved, but the new lens will last forever.

At Brusco Vision, our entire staff genuinely cares and is dedicated to offering a full range of vision correction procedures with excellence. Your eyes are unique, and we’ll work with you to create a customized treatment plan that restores your vision and improves your quality of life. Dr. Brusco can help determine at your initial consult if you are ready for this procedure after your eyes are fully evaluated (ANOVA).

Why Can't I Go to My General Ophthalmologist (who accepts insurance) to Address My Cataract?

Many eye doctors can address cataracts in most instances, and we think you should let them. Going to your ophthalmologist, who will bill insurance, is clearly the most economical choice for cataract surgery. Many patients will choose to do that because medical insurance carriers, including Medicare, will cover the surgery and the cost of a basic lens.

However, if your goal is to optimize your vision and be as spectacles-independent as possible, you should strongly consider a refractive cataract specialist whose only focus is on technology, service, and outcomes. Technologically-advanced lenses are not covered by any medical insurance policies, so if you want to fully restore your eyesight (no glasses or “readers”), you will incur additional costs even with insurance coverage.

Less Stress and More Time Saved On the Day of Your Procedure

We aim to be a different kind of practice, so your experience at Brusco Vision will not be the same as going to an insurance-based ophthalmologist – we feel it will be much improved. We purposely fall outside the scope of managed care and insurance-based services and products. Because of this, we are able to limit the number of patients we see each day, thereby providing a more personal and unique overall experience, and less of an assembly-line process you may find elsewhere. Remember cataract surgery is a procedure that will change the way you see the world, every waking moment, for the rest of your life. Don’t go to someone who won’t invest the time in getting to know your eyes inside and out. Additionally, we perform all procedures in our in-house surgery facility at Brusco Vision, which means less stress, and more time saved, for you on the day of your procedure.

You can reduce the risk of developing cataracts by blocking the sun with sunglasses and a broad-brimmed hat, and quitting smoking, among other things, but surgery is the only way to get rid of them.
- Washington Post

Reasons to Have Refractive Cataract Surgery at Brusco Vision

Refractive Cataract - Treatment Process

Refractive Cataract Surgery at Brusco Vision in Washington DC and the DMV is an outpatient experience performed in-house at our state-of-the-art facility for your convenience. The procedure is done one eye at a time one week apart or simultaneously on the same day, based on patient preference. On the day of surgery, patients can expect to be in our office for two hours though the procedure itself is painless and quick, usually performed in 10 to 20 minutes per eye. Come to the clinic with a friend or family member who can drive you home, since your vision may be blurry in recovery.


Step One

A mild sedative is offered to patients and anesthetic eye drops are applied to numb the eye. A small, gentle eyelid holder is placed between your eyelids so you don’t have to worry about blinking during the procedure.


Step Two

A small, self-sealing incision is made in the far edge of the cornea.


Step Three

The cataract is gently removed with a sophisticated ultrasound device.

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Step Four

The custom lens designed for you is then inserted through this small incision and securely positioned in place.

Recovery Time

Refractive cataract patients typically experience little if any discomfort during or after the procedure. One day after the procedure, most patients can resume normal daily tasks along with a few restrictions to protect the eye. As with any eye surgery, there is a healing period that must be completed for visual stabilization. You will be using antibiotic and anti-inflammatory eye drops for a week following surgery.

Frequently Asked Questions

No, we do not participate in any medical insurance plans.

We are a different kind of practice, whose only goal is making our patients happy with great service and results. Not taking insurance allows us to maintain a boutique experience and spend more time with our patients.

Intraocular lenses are made of a specialized acrylic or silicone material, which is inert inside the eye – the eye will not react against the lens implant. This allows the lens to remain clear, avoiding the degradation and color change occurring in the natural lens with time.

No. Macular degeneration affects the retina in the back of the eye, whereas cataract surgery addresses the lens in the front of the eye. Patients should continue to schedule annual eye exams with their health care professional to monitor eye health and check for naturally occurring eye conditions such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, retinal degeneration, or detachment.

Patients are encouraged to relax immediately following surgery, but are free to resume normal activities as comfort allows. For the first week, you should avoid rubbing or bumping the eye as well as avoid getting soap or water in your eyes while bathing or showering. Use caution with heavy lifting (greater than 25 lbs) and physical exertion for at least 2 weeks. Patients should also avoid hot tubs or swimming in a pool, lake, or ocean for 1 month.

When you have a cataract, your eye’s lens gets clouded, which can make it appear as though you are seeing through a dirty windshield. By reshaping the cornea of the eye with an excimer laser, LASIK corrects refractive defects, but surgery does not address cataracts, which cause blurriness. Experienced cataract surgeons are able to assess the cataract’s severity and decide whether LASIK would be a good option. Refractive cataract surgery is the greatest option for vision correction for many people who are not candidates for LASIK laser surgery. If you want to get out of corrective lenses and see clearly, there is often a refractive surgery available to meet your unique vision needs.

Eye doctors can help to prepare their patients for successful refractive results by diagnosing and treating dry eyes prior to refractive surgery.

Many cataract patients have already undergone refractive surgeries to enhance their distance vision, such as LASIK or photorefractive keratectomy (PRK). These procedures use a laser to reshape the cornea and improve the eye’s refraction. If you’ve already undergone any of these refractive procedures, you can still have cataract surgery utilizing the same minimally invasive procedure.

The Brusco Vision Difference

At Brusco Vision, our goal is to help you see more clearly without the help of glasses or contact lenses. We are here to serve patients in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia region, and our highly skilled and professional team will be delighted to provide you with additional information about the different forms of refractive surgery we offer. You don’t have to endure vision issues for the rest of your life. Call our office to arrange your appointment for a thorough eye exam so we can help you choose the best course of action. At your consultation, you will meet our doctor, Dr. Brusco, who will address any of your questions and concerns. Your vision is our mission.

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