Cataract Surgery

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Definition

A cataract is a clouding of the crystalline lens, and is the most common cause of reversible blindness worldwide. Cataracts typically progress slowly and cause visual impairment. They usually affect both eyes, but one eye can be more severely affected than the other.

Symptoms

Symptoms include blurred or dim vision, glare from the sun or car headlights, decreased color perception, difficulty reading, difficulty driving at night, double vision, and/or frequent changes in glasses prescriptions.

Risk Factors

Cataracts are a normal part of the aging process.  Over 50% of people over the age of 65 will develop this condition.  Cataracts can also be associated with diabetes, certain medications, trauma, smoking, chronic sun exposure, and poor nutrition.

Treatment

Early cataracts are treated by a change in your eyeglass prescription.  However, when changing the eyeglass prescription no longer improves your vision and you are unable to see well enough to do the things you need or want to do, then cataract surgery is indicated.

Surgery

Cataract surgery is a day surgery procedure.  It is not only one of the safest surgeries, but also one of the most successful.  Many new intraocular lens implants are available, and Dr. Hargrave will discuss these with you at the time you schedule your surgery to determine which lens implant is best.