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Since cataracts are located just behind your pupil, the size of your pupils is an important factor in the success of cataract surgery. Our experienced Kansas City cataract surgeons will use eyedrops to dilate your pupils before the procedure. Once dilated, we will be able to see the clouded natural lens and other structures within your eye in greater detail, allowing us to safely remove your cataracts.

Once your cataracts have been removed, we will re-constrict your pupils using another type of eyedrop, since your new intraocular lens (IOL) will be implanted in front of your pupil and iris. Depending on the type of IOL you have implanted, your pupils may remain dilated for a week or more after cataract surgery. During this time, you will need to use pupil-constricting eye drops until your pupils return to their normal size.

As your pupils start to naturally constrict again and your eyes adjust to the IOL, your vision will become gradually clearer. Some people have excellent vision immediately after surgery, while others may need to wait for their temporary blurry vision to dissipate.

If you have further questions about cataract surgery, please contact Silverstein Eye Centers today to schedule your initial consultation with one of our experienced Kansas City cataract surgeons.

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  1. Mary Fricke says:

    I had cataract surgery a couple months ago and the pupil on that eye is twice as big as my other eye that I had cataract surgery on that one 2 years ago. What is my alternative. The big pupil is still blurry. Can this be fixed?

    • Silverstein Eye Centers says:

      Hi Mary,

      Did you have that surgery here at Silverstein Eye Centers? And are you currently using any eye drops (for allergies, for example)? Might be a good idea to schedule a follow up appointment. Lots of factors can contribute to blurry vision and an enlarged pupil. We’d love to help, but the doctors will need to take a look at your eyes.

  2. Judith Bracamonte says:

    My granddaughter weighed just 1 lb 6 oz at birth and was on oxygen for a year. Thus she developed cataracts at about 16 months and they would not remove them until she was 2 years old. After the removal she was fitted with contact lenses because they said they had to wait until she was 18 and fully grown to implant lenses. However, when it was time for the surgery they said that her eyeballs are two small and she can’t have implants. We got a second opinion at UCDMC in Sacramento and they agreed with the first doctor. Is it possible that advanced science might some day make it possible for her to have implanted lenses? Thank you,

    • Hi Judith – apologies for the late reply. New, innovative eye care technologies are being introduced all the time. We certainly hope that with all the improvements to artificial lenses, your granddaughter’s procedure may be possible soon. Sorry to hear that she can’t have the implants currently available … but hang in there! Hopefully one day soon new lenses will become available to fit her eyes. Best of luck!

    • Samlesh Chand says:

      I had my cataract surgery in 2018.Few weeks later I experienced double vision due to my pupil becoming bigger than the lens.It is like a half moon on one side which is outside the lens and i see double vision with reflections on my eye.Do I have to go for another surgery.Can it be treated by puttin a contact lens?

  3. Ron says:

    I just had cataract surgery on my left eye two days ago. I could see very clearly going home in the day time. I noticed my pupil was very constricted. When it started getting dark my vision almost disappears in dim light and I feel somewhat blind in that eye. Will my pupil ever work normally again so I can see at night. Taking prednisone, an antibiotic and kerolac drops. Could these be causing it.

    • Hi Ron,

      Apologies for the delayed reply … we have forwarded your question on to the doctors. They may be able to provide some insight, and if so, we will forward their comments along to you. In the meantime, it’s probably a good idea to schedule a follow up appointment just in case.

    • gilbert rangel says:

      I have the same problem than Ron, i noticed that my pupil is very small than the other pupil is that normal?, they did surgery yesterday, did the pupil will recover its normal size and function?

      • Lynne doyle says:

        I had surgery on my left eye a week ago. Will have following surgery in a week for right eye. My left eye the pupil is smaller than the right eye . Is this ok ? Will it return to my normal size? Or after right surgery will that pupil be smaller and match left eye ?
        Thank you

      • Jane says:


  4. dee says:

    My eye (pupil) after cataract surgery is extremely dilated, and when looking at a light it splays out a lot, is this normal? And how long until the dilation goes back to normal, usually. Thanks.

    • Hi Dee,

      Yes. That’s fairly common. When you see your doctor for the follow up appointment, you should ask him/her how long the dilation will last. Without knowing your history, what medications you take, etc. it’s hard for us to know. Hope your surgery went well!

    • dr remon zaki says:

      this is due to the manner of intra orbital anasthesia.

  5. Lee says:

    After retinal tear laser surgery which included a gas bubble and a buckle inserted into my eye, I was left with a permanently dilated pupil & legally blind. Now months later a cataract developed. Can it be removed from a dilated pupil & can the pupil be repaired? Also, can a lens be inserted which could help me see either far or near from that eye? Thank you.

    • Hi Lee,

      Where was your original surgery performed? Our doctors would need to review your medical history and complete an exam before making any recommendations regarding future treatments. If you’re in Kansas City, please call our office for an appointment – we would be happy to evaluate you. Thank you!

      • Lee says:

        Thank you for responding. I had surgery in Florida where I live. Was just wondering if cataract surgery has been performed on some/any people with dilated pupils? I realize that you would have to evaluate me. Thanks again if you are able to comment on whether you have done surgery on dilated pupils just to give me hope.

        • Hi Lee,

          It would be difficult to perform any surgery on your eyes without knowing the exact cause of your permanent dilation. If, for example, there was damage caused to muscles and nerves in the eye during your last procedure, we would want to evaluate any corrective surgical options to repair the damage first before considering any type of cataract surgery. Maybe the permanent dilation resulted from unusually high pressures in the eye due to medication or other medical conditions … it’s just too difficult for us to know without getting a full medical history and evaluating your eyes directly. So sorry! Hopefully your current doctors in Florida will be better able to answer your questions after a consultation. Best of luck to you!

          • Briana says:

            Lee, obviously I know that we are two different people so my experience might not be the same as yours, but I had the exact same procedure as you had done 6 months ago, and my pupil is also permanently enlarged with very blurry vision. The doctors don’t know why. I developed a cataract as well, and have surgery scheduled for the end of next month. If you’d like, I’d be happy to share my results with you. I’m hoping for the best, especially as I’m only 27 and I’d really rather not spend the next 50 years half blind!

  6. Janice Hess says:

    Since I have pupils that stay dialated, would I not be a candidate for cataract surgery with IOL.? What would percentages be for successful procedure?

    • Hi Janice. We wouldn’t be able to offer exact percentages or determine whether your not you’re a good candidate for cataract surgery without first performing an exam. Please contact our office to schedule a consultation. Thank you!

  7. Harold Shackelford says:

    I had cataract surgery in April 2017 , my pupil in the left eye was hard to dilate and my pupils are small , however the surgeon did operate on my eye at the end of the day. He experienced problems remove my cataract and had problems putting in the new lense. This resulted in inflammation and I have blurred vision in the eye.
    How common is it to operate when the eye does not dilate?

    • Hi Harold,

      It’s hard to say — pupil dilation can vary based on any number of factors. If you were taking a specific medication at the time of your surgery, for example, and your doctor had ruled out other causes, the lack of dilation may have been expected. It really all depends on the individual and their specific factors (health, eye condition, medication use, etc.).

  8. Martha Witt says:

    I had cataract surgery 3 days ago. They gave me an injection to reduce the dialation. Now i have a ponhole pupil to see through. My vision is limited. Will my pupil go back to normal size?

    • Hi Martha,

      So sorry we didn’t see your comment sooner. Where did you have your surgery performed? Was it here in Kansas City by any chance? If your pupil hasn’t returned to normal yet, it would be best to schedule an appointment with your doctor to have your eyes examined.

  9. Valerie Noonan says:

    Have cataract surgery 6weeks ago and my pupil in that eye bigger than my other eye ,is this normal ??

    • Marie Colvin says:

      Cataract surgery caused my left pupil to be larger than my right. My 0ptometrist said that a nerve was severed. I am very upset.What can be done now?

  10. akash says:

    Thank you for sharing this blog which give me information about pupil size and cataract surgery.

  11. Vivekanandan says:

    Need, to know what pupil size is required for cataract surgery. Pls pls

  12. Debbie Trull says:

    Thank you for taking my question. After a week of cataract surgery, pupil is still dilated. Dr. concerned but said to come back in a week. Well both eyes are blurred and I can’t see) frustrated? any suggestions

  13. Naaya says:

    I had cataract surgery 3 weeks ago on my right eye. Because of cmv retinitis i have large pupil caused by high pressure. I have 20/20 vision but because of my large pupil the lens gives reflection in my pupil that looks very scary and weird. Doctor said all lenses are made out of plastic so she cant do anything. is there any thing that can be done in my case? Im really stressed and your answer would help me alot.

  14. Deb Upchurch says:

    I had cataract surgery and afterwards my pupil is now tear dropped shape. What would cause this.

  15. Leslie says:

    I had cataract surgery in April. About six weeks later I started seeing large green circles around my alarm clock at night. Also, in a darkened theatre any light ie exit over door will have a large green circle around it.
    I saw my surgeon last week. After dilation of my eyes and a through exam, he said “you have very young pupils”. He said my pupils are larger than the implants. He said in time I won’t even notice it. I am very disturbed about this. Shouldn’t the implants fit the size of my pupils? For me it presents a problem, as when I get up at night, with two clocks and a lighted fan all I see are green circles.

  16. Crystal says:

    I had cataract surgery September 26th 2019 in my left eye and every since my eye dilates larger than the other eye in the dark but restricts in the light? Doctor said he’s never seen this before? Said his educated guess would be maybe it’s the eye drops causing it? I was on prednisolone and now taking durezol.

  17. Michelle Beattie says:

    I had surgery for a torn retina.
    I know need cataract surgery and surgery on a fixed dilated pupil….. how successful will this be?
    Wondering whether to go ahead with surgery or just leave things as they are as I’ve adapted to this new way of vision.

  18. Dolores ortega says:

    I had 4 eye surgeries, 2were reversed due to high pressure. The pupil moved to one side of the eye and stayed there . Can it be move back where it belongs in the middle of the eye?

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