A cataract is clouding of the eye's normally clear lens, similar to a window that is fogged with steam. When the lens becomes cloudy, light rays cannot pass through it easily which causes the vision to become blurry. A cataract is not a growth or a film over the eye.
A cataract usually starts out small or mild and has little effect on vision. As the cataract becomes more dense, the impact on vision becomes more noticeable. You may notice some or all of the following:
More than half of all Americans develop cataracts by age 80. Although cataracts usually develop as part of the aging process, they can also result from:
Currently, there are no medications or exercises that will cause cataracts to disappear. However, if cataracts don't interfere with your life, you may decide not to do anything about them.
When they do begin to interfere with daily activities, they can be treated surgically. Cataract surgery is one of the safest and most frequently performed surgeries in the United States, with more than 1.6 million surgeries performed each year. After surgery, vision is improved in most patients. Laser treatment is sometimes used after cataract surgery to remove a film that can occasionally grow behind the lens implant.
Remember, cataracts are detected through a comprehensive eye exam. Early treatment may save your sight.
Because there's so much more to see.
If you find that a cataract is interfering with your vision, contact us. We regularly see patients that have cataract surgery because they are having difficulty seeing the golf ball, reading small print, or experiencing difficulties driving at night. The most common response the day after surgery is, "when can I have the other eye done?" followed by "why did I wait so long" or "I can't believe how vivid and clear colors are."