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Cataract

What is the Condition?

A cataract is a clouding of the natural lens of the eye. It is the most common cause of vision loss for people over 40 years of age.

How Does it Affect the Eye?

The cataract clouds the lens and makes it hard for light to reach the retina. It starts out small and has little effect on vision, but as it grows it causes your vision to blur. It also causes glare and causes colors to not be as bright as they once were.

What are the Symptoms?

The symptoms of this ailment differ from one person to the next. Regular eye checks, though, can help you understand how hyperopia will affect you. There are some common symptoms of this disease, though, which include:

  • A change in the prescription of your glasses
  • Colors often appear less bright, as if they are faded out
  • Sensitivity to light and glare
  • Reduced clarity in vision that cannot be fixed with spectacles
  • Difficulty driving at night
How Many Types of Cataracts are there?

There are three types of cataracts:

  • Cortical Cataract: These are white, wedge-like opacities that start at the outer edge of the lens and form inwards, like spokes on a wheel. A cortical cataract occurs in the cortex of the lens.
  • Subcapsular Cataract: This type of cataract develops on the back surface of the lens. People with diabetes or those who regularly take steroid medications are at increased risk of developing this type of cataract.
  • Nuclear Cataract: This type of cataract forms in the central part of the lens. It is the most common type of cataract and is associated with aging. It causes a hardening and yellowing of the lens.
What are the Risk Factors for Developing this Condition?

Some of the risk factors that are associated with cataracts are:

  • Aging
  • Smoking
  • Too much exposure to the sun
  • Long term steroid use
  • Diabetes
  • Hypertension
  • Obesity
  • A family with a history of cataracts
  • High blood pressure
  • Previous injuries or surgeries to the eye
How is this Condition Treated?

In the early stages, a change in prescription glasses is all that’s needed. As the cataract grows, surgery is the only treatment option.

Cataract surgery is one of the most commonly done procedures in the world. The procedure is called Phacoemulsification. A tiny cut is made at the side of the cornea and a probe is inserted. This probe emits ultrasound waves that help soften and break the lens, so that it can be suctioned out. A folded lens implant is inserted into the incision. It pops open and is positioned appropriately.