via The Medical City | A cataract is a gradual clouding of the eye’s naturally transparent lens. The lens of the eye is one of the two important structures responsible for the proper focusing of images that allow people to see clearly. When changes take place in the normal structure of the lens, blurring of vision can occur.
What are the signs and symptoms of cataracts?
A cloudy lens allows less light to enter the eye and scatters it in different directions.
Because of this, the most common complaint of someone with cataracts is blurring of vision that is inadequately improved with eyeglasses. Vision may also be worse at night or during conditions with poor lighting.
Who can have cataracts?
Cataracts may affect people of any age.
Infants and children may be born with them (congenital) or acquire them at some point in their young lives (developmental or juvenile).
Older adults are most commonly affected. Studies indicate that 6 out of 10 adults over the age of 60 show symptoms of cataracts. However, the rates at which cataracts develop and progress varies from one individual to another.
Certain medical conditions like diabetes, or intake of rugs, like steroids, can also cause cataracts. Trauma to the eye, infections and inflammation are likewise possible causes.
How will you know if you have cataracts?
Cataracts are hardly seen with the unaided eye.
The only way to find out is by consulting an ophthalmologist (eye doctor). An examination using a special instrument called a slit lamp biomicroscope will reveal the presence or absence of a cataract.
How are cataracts treated?
The decision when and by what method to treat cataracts depends on the extent by which they affect vision and your quality of life.
Early-stage cataracts can be treated with eyeglasses or eye drop medications. However, there are merely temporary measures and will not remove what is already there. Eye drops have a very small percentage of success in stopping the progress of the cataracts.
The only definitive treatment for cataracts is surgical removal. Laser therapy is not used in any way to treat cataracts.
Cataracts are removed manually, or using machines through a procedure called phacoemulsification.
The manual method involves making a large enough incision to sutures. This technique requires either general or peribulbar (injection around the eyeball) anesthesia.
Phacoemulsification uses a technologically-advanced machine that aspirates the cataract on powder form through a very small wound. Most of the time, this wound need not be sutured. This procedure is bloodless and can be done with eye drop anesthesia.
Once the cataract is removed, it cannot grow back. An artificial lane, or intraocular lens implant, is placed inside the eye to replace the old, clouded lens. This will allow you to recover the clear vision you had before the cataract set in.
Millions of people worldwide undergo this vision-improving procedure every year with excellent results.
Can The Medical City provide me with first-class cataract treatment?
The Medical City takes pride in being at the forefront of eye health care delivery. Our Eye Center boasts of state-of-the-art equipment and facilities that can rival any hospital in the world. More importantly, we are staffed with a team of competent and skilled eye doctors, nurses and technicians that have your welfare at heart.
Nowadays, there is hardly any reason for anyone to suffer having a cataract. Treatment is relatively safe and simple and brings with it priceless rewards.
If you suspect that you may have a cataract, we urge you to visit any of our eye doctors or call us for any assistance that you may need.
Note: This information is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical advise, diagnosis or treatment. If you or someone you know have any of the symptoms mentioned above, it is advisable to seek professional help.
The Medical City offers a roster of competent eye specialists who may assess and treat people with cataract. For any inquiries please call:
Tel. No.: (632) 988-1000 / (632) 988-7000 ext. 6252
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Tel. No.: (632) 988-1000 / (632) 988-7000 ext. 6444
Reference: The Medical City, Department of Ophthalmology