Cataract (kat-uh-rakt)

What is a Cataract?

  • A cataract is a clouding or opacity in the lens of the eye
    • Depending upon the size of the cataract, it can diminish normal vision
    • The clouding process is a result of changes in the proteins and lens fibers in the eye

What are the Symptoms of Cataracts?

  • Cataracts usually form rather slowly, so the symptoms my slowly progress over time
  • Blurred or hazy vision
  • Reduced color vision
  • Increased difficulty seeing at night
  • Change in prescription
  • Increased complaints of glare when driving at night

How Common are Cataracts?

  • Cataracts are very common as you age and cataract surgery is the most commonly performed surgical procedure performed in the world!What Causes Cataracts?
  • Most cataracts form as a result of age and time
  • Other possible causes of cataracts include diabetes, certain medications, UV radiation, smoking, alcohol and nutritional deficiency
  • Some infants or young children can develop cataracts, but this is very rare
    • The cause is usually genetics or infection during pregnancy

When do Cataracts Occur?

  • Most cataracts develop in people over the age of 55
    • Occasionally they occur in very young children

How are Cataracts Diagnosed?

  • Diagnosing cataracts begins with a comprehensive eye exam at¬†Shanks Family Eye Care
    • During this exam, your doctor uses multiple tests to evaluate the presence of a cataract
    • This may include evaluation of the lens and other supplemental testing

How are Cataracts Treated?

  • There are some approaches to try and prevent cataract formation.
  • This includes:
    • Wearing sunglasses
    • Discontinuing smoking
    • Increasing the intake of antioxidant vitamins in the diet
    • Eating lots of leafy green vegetables
  • Treating cataracts depends on the severity and progression of the cataract.
    • Cataract surgery is the most common treatment and it is the most commonly performed surgical procedure in the world!

Cataract Resources