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Question:
I have been advised by an ophthalmologist that I need cataract surgery. He indicated some urgency and promoted a new technology—laser—that he has recently acquired. I was uncomfortable with the communication and do not have much confidence in the provider. I am limited in my choice of provider by my Medicare plan; limited just to this one office and perhaps just to this person. What is the way to obtain an outside second opinion regarding the procedure? Is there some system for checking the success rate of practicing ophthalmologists?

Answer:
You can check with your local medical or state medical society to see if there have been reports about the doctor. There is rarely urgency in having cataract surgery and this depends on how badly the vision is affected or whether the cataract is creating other problems in the eye. The "new" laser procedure is using a femtosecond laser to do all the "cutting" in the surgery and some think that this may be the safest method for cataract removal. If you are uncomfortable with the doctor, please call the administrator of your insurance plan and ask for a second opinion.

Answered by: Jeffrey Whitman, MDDr. Jeffrey Whitman

Categories: Cataracts, Eye Surgery

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Answered: Feb 27, 2013

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