Optometrist Questions Ophthalmologist

How long after cataract surgery can I sleep on my side?

I am a 50 year old female. I want to know how long after cataract surgery can I sleep on my side?

2 Answers

Cataract surgery should not affect how you sleep, aside from wearing the protective eye shield to avoid rubbing the operated eye. Rubbing your eye or even splashing water in your eye can increase the chance of acquiring a postoperative infection. You may also want to avoid sleeping on the side of the operated eye for the first 24 hours. Cataract surgery is generally an outpatient procedure, completed in under an hour. Cataract surgery is highly successful in improving your eyesight and should allow you to return to your normal activities, like driving, following a few simple weeks of recovery. Newer techniques, such as laser assistance, have made the procedure even more gentle, precise and customizable. Your cataract surgery recovery begins immediately following your procedure. At the completion of your cataract surgery, a lightweight protective shield will be placed over your eyes and held in place with surgical tape. This shield will decrease the risk of injury from inadvertently rubbing or accidentally bumping your eye. Most patients are able to go home within a few hours of arrival at the outpatient facility. You will be required to have a friend or family member drive you home following surgery. In general, you should be able to watch TV, do some light computer work and shower or bathe within a few hours of returning home after your procedure. While at home, you may be allowed to remove your eye shield, but you should wear it when sleeping for at least a week to prevent eye injury. Full recovery from cataract surgery should be complete in about a month, although it can take up to three months for your eye to be completely healed.

Dr. Edwin M. Schottenstein
Usually 1-2 weeks