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Four Factors That Affect the Cost of Cataract Surgery By Daniel J Tepper on May 14, 2019

An illustration of laser-assisted cataract surgeryCataract surgery is an effective and highly successful treatment option for cataracts. During this procedure, surgeons can remove the clouded lens of the eye and replace it with an intraocular lens (IOL).

At Wicker Park Eye Center in Chicago, IL, we understand that patients want to know what cataract surgery will cost. In this blog post, we discuss the four factors that affect the cost of cataract surgery.

1. Technology

Patients have the option of undergoing traditional or laser-assisted cataract surgery.

The traditional technique involves the use of a scalpel to create a small incision in the cornea. A circular opening is made in the lens capsule, and then an ultrasound probe is used to break up the clouded center of the lens.

The laser-assisted technique involves the use of camera and ultrasound imaging equipment to map the eyes surface and collect information about the lens. This information is used by the computer-controlled laser to create precise incisions in the cornea and open the lens capsule. Then, as with traditional cataract surgery, the ultrasound probe is used to break up the cataract-affected lens and suction out the pieces.

Traditional cataract surgery is typically the more affordable option because it is covered by most insurance plans and Medicare. Laser-assisted cataract surgery may be associated with additional out-of-pocket costs.

2. Type of IOL

There is a range of IOLs that are available for use after cataract surgery. Some IOLs offer improved vision at one distance. For example, after cataract surgery, patients may have clear distance vision, but still require reading glasses.

Other IOLs provide clear vision at all distances. However, these typically have a higher cost.

During your consultation, we can go over the IOL options that are available in your case, and discuss how much of the costs are covered by your health insurance or Medicare plan.

3. The Location and Experience of the Surgeon

The location of the surgeon can increase the cost of cataract surgery. A surgeon in a large city, such as Chicago, will have higher operating costs than a surgeon in a small city.

In addition, the experience of the surgeon is also a factor. It is always best to choose a board-certified, skilled cataract surgeon to increase your chances of achieving a good post-surgical outcome.

4. Health Insurance or Medicare

Your health insurance or Medicare plan will play a role in the cost of surgery. Some patients may be able to get the majority of cataract surgery costs covered by their plan if they undergo traditional cataract surgery with a monofocal IOL.

Patients that undergo laser-assisted cataract surgery with a premium IOL may have some additional out-of-pocket costs. Some patients wish to cover these costs with the assistance of third-party financing.

Contact Our Practice

Because there are so many variables when it comes to cataract surgery, it is difficult to determine accurate pricing until the patient comes in for a consultation. To schedule an appointment at our Chicago practice, contact us online at your earliest convenience or call us at (773) 376-2020.

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Wicker Park Eye Center

At Wicker Park Eye Center in Chicago, IL, Dr. Daniel J. Tepper, a board-certified ophthalmologist and Parisha Shah, fellowship-trained optometrists, provide patient-centric eye care. Our affiliations include:

  • American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO)
  • American Medical Association (AMA)
  • American Optometric Association (AOA)

To schedule an appointment at our eye clinic, please contact us online or call (773) 376-2020.

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"I have visited Wicker Eye Park Center a few times, with each visit I have received excellent service. Dr. Tepper is the best ophthalmologist that I have seen in many years. He, like his staff, is also courteous respectful and very professional." Juan B.

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