Driving – Can you drive after cataract surgery?

To be able to drive after cataract surgery, or indeed, at all, you must meet the DVLA’s visual standards for driving(1). This means that you must be able to read a number plate from 20 metres away. You also need to be able to read the 6/12 of an eye test chart with both eyes open*. You can arrange this test with your optician.

In general, it’s normal that you’ll be able to do both of these things again within 24 hours of having cataract surgery.

However, some patients will need to have new prescription glasses or contact lenses to be able to drive after cataract surgery. In most cases, it’s advisable that you wait four weeks, so your eye is fully recovered, before having an eye test to get new glasses.

If you’re having cataract surgery on both your eyes and are between operations, dependent on the severity of the remaining cataract, you may be advised that it’s safe for you to drive, but ensure you seek advice from your optician before doing so.



  1. GOV UK: Driving eyesight rules

Other related questions

  • Glasses – Why do I need glasses after cataract surgery?

  • Surgery – What does an eye look like after cataract surgery?

  • Hair – How soon can I wash my hair after cataract surgery?

  • Mascara – How long after cataract surgery can I wear mascara?

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