Many cataract operations are now done under local anaesthesia as day cases. General anaesthesia is preferred in younger patients and especially where there is a risk of straining or moving during the procedure as, for example, when the patient is deaf. An overnight stay is needed after a general anaesthetic in many cases. The elderly patient living alone with no relatives is also usually kept overnight in hospital but the trend is towards more and more day-
case work, dictated partly by economic reasons, but also by safer surgery.
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