Cataract Symptoms and Treatment Options Explained

Posted By Key-Whitman Eye Center || 7-Dec-2012

photodune-1561797-old-man-xs(1)Cataracts are a common eye condition causing vision loss, especially in older individuals, though even young patients can develop cataracts. Contrary to popular belief, cataracts are not a growth or film on the lens of the eye, but rather a clouding of the lens of the eye. Cataract symptoms vary based on the severity of the cataracts. If the cataracts remain small, they may not affect vision much at all, but the larger and denser the cataracts, the more they will affect vision, requiring cataract surgery for treatment.

Once cataracts begin to develop, it is not possible to reverse the cloudiness of the lens or to halt further development. Cataract surgery is the only way to restore vision that is lost due to cataracts. During surgery, the clouded lens will be removed and replaced with an artificial lens implant. Unlike other eye conditions, treating cataracts isn’t urgent (unless they are so advanced you are completely unable to see) because although they affect your vision, cataracts do not typically cause damage to the eye.

Cataract Symptoms

As cataracts develop, they can affect your ability to see in several ways. Some common symptoms of cataracts include:

o Difficulty seeing street signs, curbs and freeway exits
o Difficulty seeing traffic lights, or seeing a halo or glare around lights
o Difficulty focusing while watching TV or movies
o Difficulty seeing the faces clearly
o Difficulty writing and reading
o Difficulty playing games or sports
o Difficulty navigating around the house with normal daily activities

Click here to view a cataract simulator to see how cataracts might affect your vision.

Cataract Treatment Options

In order to restore vision loss due to cataracts, the cataracts cannot be “cleared.” Rather, the lens must be removed and replaced with an implant. Key-Whitman provides several options to cataract patients for lens replacement than the standard monofocal lens, which corrects vision at a single distance. Multifocal lenses will correct vision at a variety of distances and may even eliminate the need to wear reading glasses following surgery. Cataract treatment options available at Key-Whitman include:

o Crystalens® -- An intraocular, accomodating lens implant that is used to improve vision near and far away. Individuals who undergo Crystalens® laser eye surgery can eliminate their dependence on contact lenses, bifocals and reading glasses. Crystalens® is the most advanced form of intraocular lens implant cataract surgery. It is also the only naturally focusing lens available to correct vision at multiple focus distances.
o TECNIS® Multifocal Lens -- An implantable lens used to correct near and far vision and may also eliminate your need for reading glasses due to presbyopia. Ninety-four percent of patients say they would choose TECNIS Multifocal lenses again.
o AcrySof® IQ ReSTOR® -- And intraocular lens (IOL) that is the latest advancement in cataract surgery technology. The AcrySof® IQ ReSTOR® IOL is designed to provide enhanced image quality and a full range of vision, giving cataract patients the best opportunity to live life free of glasses.
o AcrySof® IQ Toric -- Implantable lenses designed specifically for cataract patients with astigmatism. If you have astigmatism, you may still experience blurred and distorted vision with a monofocal intraocular lens, but the AcrySof® IQ Toric lens will be better able to restore your vision.

If you are considering treatment for cataracts, contact Key-Whitman to schedule a comprehensive exam. We will be able to discuss all of your options with you. As with any medical procedure, it’s best to do your research prior to committing to treatment. Key-Whitman will help explain all of your options to you.

Are you considering treatment for cataracts? What are some of your primary concerns or questions? Let us know in the comments below or on our Facebook Page!
Categories: Cataracts, Eye Conditions
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