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cataract surgery & complications from meniere's disease

don from Oregon
New Member
Joined: 8 months ago
Posts: 1
Topic starter  
my optometrist told me a have moderate cataract and i am considering the possibility of surgery
as I have found a number of options in replacement lenses
1. single focal lens
2.bifocal lenses
3. one eye for distance and one eye for reading/ computer
I am wondering if anyone might have had this procedure and can offer any information on your results.
and how it effected your menieres ( if at all)
I have had bifocal glasses in the past that would make my meniere's flair up
but I don't know if this would be an issue with cataract replacement lenses

Andi Bloom
VeDA Staff
Joined: 9 months ago
Posts: 1

Hi Don, 

VeDA has an article on vestibular patients and cataract surgery that you may find helpful titled "Post-Operative Balance Issues Following Cataract Surgery." If you need any other resources, feel free to contact VeDA's Community Support Coordinator at [email protected] 


-Andi Bloom

New Member
Joined: 8 months ago
Posts: 1

Hi Don,

If one has a vestibular disorder, than just get one type of corrective lens - DO NOT get one corrective lens for distance and then another for reading - that could seriously aggravate one's vestibular order.  There are a number of factors to  consider when choosing what type of corrective replacement lens to get:   What activities do you do the most, and how bad is your distance vision and do you have a moderate to severe astigmatism on top of that?  

If your cataracts are "moderate" then maybe it's not time to consider surgery - what did your opthamologist say (excuse the misspelling)?  If you're noticing that you're no longer seeing as well with your distance corrective glasses, especially at night, then maybe it's time. But don't do the procedure if it's not absolutely needed at this time.

Why?  Because if you have a vestibular disorder like we do, then your adjustment period might not be that smooth and it might take somewhat longer, and your symptoms could be aggravated in the short-term.  I had my cataracts removed in the first few months of 2019.  I don't have Meniere's but I do have a damaged/dead vestibular-cochlear nerve on the right side (since Dec. 2016), along with hearing loss, postural vertigo, the usual imbalance with turning my head suddenly or navigating uneven terrain, and, most significantly, chronic vestibular migraines that can persist for two to three weeks at a time.   

Though I now love my new eyes and having sharp distant vision, my adaptation to these new replacement lens did take some time, maybe up to 6 months.  I had chosen to get the special Toric lens because they help correct severe astigmatism.   Following the second procedure, my migraines began occurring almost daily over the next 4-6 months.   My simplistic interpretation of this occurrence is that my brain was adjusting to my new eyes as one's eyes play a more prominent role when the inner ear's vestibular center gets damaged.   Don't know if that's really the case or not, but until I hear differently from an expert . . . 

Bottom line:  Wait until you absolutely need the surgery and choose only ONE type of corrective lens for both eyes, not one of each.  

P.S.  I hope you're OK with all these fires happening in S. Oregon.

PL from NJ
New Member
Joined: 7 months ago
Posts: 1

Hi Don,

Let me give you a little background so you compare the severity of our illnesses. I have had vestibular disorder for almost four years now. My main problems were dizziness, imbalance, and sway when walking, no migraine and no ringing in the ears. I got diagnosed in March 2017 where I failed the balanced chair rotary test big time. I was lucky to have a very good vestibular therapist. I went through vestibular rehab therapy for several months and gradually once my brain was retrained I got better and with lifestyle changes.  Only a few times that I had serious relapses when I had major life stresses and situations when things were out of control.  

In November 2017, I had eye operations, the kind that implanted multi-focal lenses.  The monovision type was never presented to me as an option.  I find it very strange to have each eye functions differently- so much coordination between the two eyes and the brain, the balance organ etc. My operations on each eye were two weeks apart. I did not find the time in-between adjustment too difficult.  My new multi-focal lenses work well.  It is like I have a new life where I can see everything clearly from road signs to words on computer screen.  One big drawback for the multi-focal in my case has been the glare from the lights at night -- tremendous. When the cars pass me it was like I have several high powered lamps shining at me.  It was scary.  I recently bought a night vision pair of glasses from Target $13 with yellow lenses, but I have not tried them driving at night.  However, I use them during the day for walking, driving etc.  They are so soothing. I love them.  A technician at the eye surgery place who had the same type of lenses I have said it took him 1 year and 7 month for the glare to go away.  Another drawback is this option generates high cost out of pocket. Medicare will not reimburse you for these fancy lenses.   

I have several friends who had the regular long-distance implant, say they love it - simple, affordable, and no complications. When they read they just have to put glasses on.   In your case, perhaps this option will present low risk for you.  If you would like to discuss more details please give me your email or number to call.