Published: 2022-12-13

What you need to know about your cataract surgery. How to prepare, what you need to know before surgery, and what you need to know after.



Now that you have been scheduled for Cataract Surgery, please follow the instructions.

  • Make sure your pre-operative medical clearance visit with your family medical doctor or internist has been completed.
  • Do not discontinue blood thinners such as Coumadin or Plavix unless specifically instructed by Dr. Benjamin.
  • Fill out the prescriptions for your eye medications and take them in accordance with the instructions on the page.
  • Please arrange for someone to drive you home on the day of the surgery.
  • Do not eat or drink for eight hours before your surgery.


  • Take any prescribed heart, blood pressure, and eye medication at your usual times (you can take a minimal amount of water with your medications if needed, however, do not eat or drink anything else).
  • On the morning of the surgery discontinues all eye medications in the eye that will be operated on. Please continue with your regular eye medications if you are using any in the eye that is not to be operated on.
  • If you are taking insulin injections for diabetes, use 1⁄2 the usual amount of long-acting insulin and do not take your short-acting insulin. Bring your insulin bottles to the surgery center.
  • Bring all the eye medications prescribed to you.
  • Wash your face with soap in the morning.
  • Do not wear any make-up, skin creams, lotions, or moisturizers.
  • Wear comfortable clothing that fastens in the front. Do not wear pull-over-the-head clothing, such as turtlenecks or t-shirts.
  • Do not wear any jewelry (e.g. earrings, necklaces, or chains).


  • Please be aware that after your surgery your eyes will be irritated and light-sensitive. Your eyes may burn, sting, and tear excessively and you may feel a foreign body sensation. Do not rub your eyes. Use Tylenol to help with any pain after surgery (560-1000 mg every 4 hours as needed).
  • Follow your eye medication schedule.
  • If necessary, you may gently dab-dry the corner of the eyelids and lashes.
  • Take it easy for a few hours. The medications used to calm you during surgery will be in your system for approximately 24 hours, so you might feel tired and sleepy.
  • Do not drive a car, or operate machinery or power tools the first 24 hours after surgery.
  • Do not drink any alcoholic beverages first 24 hours after surgery.
  • Do not make any important decisions, or sign important papers the first 24 hours after surgery.
  • Do not strain or lift any heavy objects.
  • Do not shower or wash your head first 24 hours.
  • Leave the protective shield in place for the first 24 hours following the surgery.
  • Do not sleep with your pets in your bed for 24 hours after the procedure and use clean linens.


  • Please be advised of the importance of your follow-up care.
  • You are required to come into our office (9201 Sunset Blvd Suite 709, West Hollywood) within 24 hours after your surgery for your first post-operative appointment. Follow- ing your post-operative visit there are 4 required visits with your optometrist: at 1 week, 2 weeks, 1 month, and 3 months from the surgery day.
  • You may or may not see clearly right away after surgery with your operated eye. This depends on many variables, such as eye pressure, or the effect of the incision producing temporary astigmatism (astigmatism is an alteration in the curvature of the cornea). Dr. Benjamin may change your medications or your activities based on his evaluation of how your eye is healing.
  • Take it easy for a few hours. The medications used to calm you during surgery will be in your system for approximately 24 hours, so you might feel tired and sleepy.
  • You must return to all the medications you were taking before your surgery or as prescribed by your internist or medical doctor. Please follow your eye medication regimen unless instructed otherwise.
  • Rarely are stitches used, but if they are, the stitch is left in to dissolve on its own over 1-4 years. It rarely requires removal.
  • Please be advised of the importance of your follow-up care.
  • You should wear protective glasses for 1 week when you are outside. Wear the sunglasses provided, since most other varieties do not provide adequate protection (rated UV 400, or better). You can wear regular, clear glasses when you are inside. If your own glasses adversely affect the vision in your operated eye, the prescription lens can be replaced with a non-corrective lens until the eye is healed (about 4 weeks to 3 months after surgery).
  • The protective shield should be worn at nap time and during sleep for 1 week or 2 weeks if you sleep on your stomach. Tape the shield over the operated eye with the pointed part toward the nose.
  • You may shower and wash your hair, but avoid soap and water in your eyes.
  • Driving is permitted only if you can see well enough. Only you can determine whether you can drive safely. Start slowly as you are still adapting to your new correction.
  • You may resume low-impact exercise on the 2nd postoperative day. No aerobic exercise, inverted yoga positions, or weight lifting for 1 week.
  • No swimming for at least 2 weeks.
  • No sexual activity for 1 week.
  • Do not wear mascara for 1 week after the surgery. Eye shadow can be used at any time after the 1st postoperative day.