Phacoemulsification or Phaco cataract surgery is a modern innovation to remove cloudy lenses by using an ultrasonic device that emulsifies and removes the diseased lens. After phacoemulsification, an intraocular lens (IOL) is inserted to replace the eye's natural lens.
A cataract affects the crystalline lens of the eye which is responsible for focusing light on the retina. There is no medical cure for cataract; glasses can help temporarily to improve vision but the only way to restore vision is to undergo cataract surgery.
Aside from phacoemulsification, there are other types of surgery for cataract including the rarely performed intracapsular cataract extraction (ICCE) and the extracapsular cataract extraction (ECCE). All of these procedures have a common goal of removing the diseased lens, the difference is in the way they approach the extraction of the opacified lens. Cataract extraction via ICCE has been outdated by ECCE and phaco, thus the procedure is rarely ever done.
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