Cataract Surgery in Korea | Best Clinics, Costs, Procedure Types & more!


Everything you need to know about cataract surgery in Korea!

Cataract surgery in Korea has garnered international attention for its advanced technology, high success rates, and affordable prices. This surgical procedure offers a solution to cataracts, a common eye condition leading to blurred vision, by replacing the eye's clouded lens with a clear artificial one. Korean clinics are renowned for their state-of-the-art facilities, skilled surgeons, and comprehensive aftercare, making this country a top destination for patients seeking quality eye care. Costs are competitive, especially when compared to the USA, and the best clinics provide services tailored to international visitors. Read on to learn more about cataract surgery in Korea, from the procedure and benefits to costs and the best places to receive treatment.

What Is Cataract Surgery?

Cataract surgery involves the removal of the lens of the eye that has become opaque due to cataracts and its replacement with an artificial lens, known as an intraocular lens (IOL), to restore clear vision. The process typically employs a method known as phacoemulsification, where the surgeon makes a small incision in the eye to insert a tiny probe that breaks up and removes the cloudy lens, followed by the insertion of the new lens. This procedure has a high success rate, offering not only a significant improvement in vision but also often reducing the patient's dependency on glasses or contact lenses. The benefits of cataract surgery extend beyond improved eyesight; it enhances the quality of life, reduces the risk of falls and injuries associated with poor vision, and can improve mental health by enabling a return to daily activities and hobbies.

Techniques for cataract removal involve:

1. Phacoemulsification
  • A tiny incision is made in the front of the eye (cornea).
  • A needle-thin probe is inserted into the lens to break up the cataract using ultrasound waves.
  • The fragments of the cataract are suctioned out.
  • The lens capsule at the back of the eye is left intact for implanting the artificial lens.
  • Stitches may close the corneal incision after the procedure.
2. Extracapsular Cataract Extraction
  • Requires a larger incision than phacoemulsification.
  • The front capsule of the lens and the cloudy lens are removed in one piece through the large incision.
  • The very back capsule of the lens is preserved as a base for the artificial lens.
  • This method is chosen for patients with specific eye complications and necessitates the use of stitches to close the incision.
cataract eye surgery korea cost

Why Get Cataract Surgery in Korea?

Korea stands out in the realm of cataract surgery due to its cutting-edge technology, skilled ophthalmologists, and world-class medical infrastructure. Korean eye clinics are equipped with the latest surgical instruments and follow stringent medical protocols, ensuring the highest standard of care. Moreover, the emphasis on patient experience and satisfaction in Korea means that both domestic and international patients receive personalized care tailored to their specific needs. The surgeons in Korea are among the most experienced in the world, often having performed thousands of cataract surgeries, which further boosts the success rates. Additionally, Korea offers the surgery at a fraction of the cost compared to Western countries, without compromising on quality, making it an attractive destination for medical tourists.

What Does Cataract Surgery in Korea Involve?

For foreign visitors, the process of cataract surgery in Korea is streamlined to ensure convenience and comfort. Most reputable clinics offer consultation services in multiple languages, including English, and often have dedicated international departments to assist with arrangements such as visa applications, accommodation, and transportation. 
  • Time: The cataract surgery process in Korea is efficient and typically painless, requiring less than 30 minutes per eye and conducted on an outpatient basis. 
  • Pre-surgery: Prior to the procedure, patients receive a thorough eye examination and engage in discussions with their surgeon to select the most appropriate intraocular lens (IOL) and set expectations for outcomes. 
  • Aftercare: Following the procedure, close monitoring and scheduled follow-up appointments are conducted to facilitate the best recovery possible. 
  • Recovery: Despite the procedure's rapid nature, which usually spans 10 to 30 minutes based on case specifics and techniques applied, patients are encouraged to dedicate a full day to account for both pre-operative and post-operative processes in the clinic. 
  • Surgery: The surgery is often performed one eye at a time, with a period of rest in between to ensure proper healing of the first eye before proceeding to the second. 
  • Return to daily routine: Patients generally are able to return to their daily routines within a few days post-surgery, though achieving full visual stabilization may take from a few weeks to one month.

Best Cataract Surgery Clinics in Korea

Listed below are the best clinics for cataract surgery in Korea, known for their advanced technologies, exceptional patient care, and highly skilled surgeons.

1. BGN Eye Clinic

One of the best clinics for cataract surgery in Korea is BGN Eye Clinic. Known for its expertise in eye care, BGN Eye Clinic offers a comprehensive range of ophthalmic services, including cataract surgery, with state-of-the-art facilities and English-speaking staff. They utilize the latest surgical techniques and provide personalized care plans to ensure the best outcomes for their patients.

Occupying the 11th floor of Korea's iconic Lotte World Tower, BGN Eye Clinic offers not just exceptional medical care but also a serene and picturesque setting overlooking Seoul. This enhances the patient's experience by offering tranquility and comfort. The clinic is equipped with the most advanced surgical equipment such as VISUMAX 800 and Schwind Amaris Red, alongside cutting-edge diagnostic tools like Daytona and Pentacam. These technologies ensure precise and effective procedures, cementing BGN's reputation as a leader in eye care.

The clinic's remarkable team of doctors includes specialists with impressive credentials. Each doctor brings a wealth of expertise to the clinic, having been affiliated with prestigious associations such as the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (ASCRS) and the Korean Ophthalmological Society. Dr. Sehkwang Park, Dr. Jungwan Kim, Dr. Gyeongmin Yoo, and their esteemed colleagues are known for performing over 10,000 cataract and refractive surgeries, highlighting their extensive experience and skill in treating a wide range of eye conditions.


BGN Eye Clinic Lotte Tower provides a comprehensive range of vision correction procedures. These include advanced techniques such as SMILE PRO, LASIK, LASEK, and ICL, as well as expert care in cataract and presbyopia surgeries with the implantation of Intraocular Lenses (IOLs). The clinic specializes in both monofocal and multifocal IOLs to accommodate different patient needs, ensuring personalized care that aims for the best possible vision outcomes.

Cataract Surgery and IOLs

Cataract surgery at BGN Eye Clinic involves the removal of the clouded natural lens and its replacement with an artificial lens to restore clear vision. Patients have the option to choose between monofocal IOLs, which correct vision at a single focal point, and multifocal IOLs, which allow for improved vision at multiple distances. The clinic’s meticulous approach to guiding patients in selecting the most appropriate lens type underscores its commitment to achieving optimal results for each individual.

Choosing BGN Eye Clinic for cataract surgery means entrusting your vision to a team of eminent professionals who prioritize your eye health and satisfaction. The combination of a serene setting, state-of-the-art technology, and a comprehensive selection of procedures makes BGN an ideal choice for those seeking top-notch eye care. This clinic not only offers advanced cataract surgery options but also ensures that each patient receives tailored care designed to meet their unique vision needs, thereby restoring not only sight but also quality of life.
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Cataract Surgery Aftercare

After cataract surgery, patients are provided with detailed aftercare instructions to ensure a smooth and speedy recovery. This includes using prescribed eye drops to prevent infection and inflammation, wearing eye protection, especially in sunny or dusty environments, and avoiding strenuous activities for a few weeks. Regular follow-up visits are crucial to monitor the healing process, and patients are advised to report any signs of complications, such as persistent pain, vision loss, or flashes of light, immediately.

Cost of Cataract Surgery in Korea

The cost of cataract surgery in Korea varies depending on the type of IOL used and the specific clinic, but it generally ranges from $1,000 to $3,000 per eye. This is significantly lower than the cost in the USA, where the surgery can exceed $5,000 per eye without insurance. The lower cost in Korea does not mean a compromise in quality; rather, it reflects the efficiency of the Korean healthcare system and the competitive pricing among clinics. For many international patients, the affordable cost coupled with the high standard of care makes Korea an appealing option for cataract surgery.

Alternatives to Cataract Surgery

While cataract surgery is the most effective treatment for advanced cataracts, there are alternatives for managing early-stage cataracts or for those who cannot undergo surgery. One alternative is stronger prescription glasses or magnifying lenses to help with vision impairment. Another option is the use of anti-glare sunglasses or changing the lighting at home to reduce glare and improve visibility. Lastly, certain lifestyle changes, like increasing the intake of antioxidants through diet, may slow the progression of cataracts. These alternatives can help manage symptoms but do not address the root cause like surgery does.


Frequently Asked Questions

What is cataract surgery?

Cataract surgery is a medical procedure that involves removing the eye's clouded lens and replacing it with a clear artificial lens to restore vision impaired by cataracts.

What is the cost of cataract surgery in Korea?

The cost of cataract surgery in Korea typically ranges from $1,000 to $3,000 per eye, varying by clinic and the type of IOL chosen, making it significantly more affordable than in many Western countries, including the USA.

What is the best clinic for cataract surgery in Korea?

BGN Eye Clinic is among the best clinics for cataract surgery in Korea, recognized for its advanced technology, skilled medical staff, and comprehensive patient care services.