Cataract formation makes your vision cloudy, in cataract surgery, the lens inside your eye is removed and replaced with an artificial lens (intraocular lens) to restore your clear vision.
The procedure typically is performed on an outpatient basis using only local anesthesia and does not require an overnight hospital stay.
Most modern cataract procedures involve the use of a high-frequency ultrasound probe that breaks up the cloudy lens into small pieces, which are then gently removed from the eye with suction.
This procedure, called phacoemulsification or "phaco" can be performed with smaller incisions than previous surgical techniques for cataract removal, promoting faster healing and reducing the risk of cataract surgery complications, such as a retinal detachment.
After the cataract and all remnants of the cloudy lens have been removed from your eye, the cataract surgeon inserts a clear intraocular lens, positioning it securely behind the iris and pupil, in the same location your natural lens occupied. (In special cases, an IOL might be placed in front of the iris and pupil, but this is less common).