Cataracts - defined as a clouding of the lens portion of the eye - are a common
eye condition causing vision loss, especially in older individuals. It
is commonly thought that cataracts are a growth or film on the lens of
the eye, when in fact, cataracts are a clouding of the focusing lens located
behind the pupil.
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.
Click here to read more about cataract surgery at Key-Whitman.
What causes cataracts?
To see clearly, the lens of the eye must be clear so that light rays traveling
through the pupil of the eye to the retina are not distorted. While cataracts
are most common with age, even children can develop cataracts. Congenital
or developmental cataracts in infants or children can be caused by birth
defects, or appear without any cause. Disease, previous eye surgery, trauma
to the eye and some medications can contribute to the development of cataracts
in children and adults.
What are the symptoms of cataracts?
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 faces clearly
o Difficulty writing and reading
o Difficulty playing games or sports
o Difficulty navigating around the house during normal daily activities
Click here to view a cataract simulator to see how cataracts might affect your vision.
If you experience any of the above symptoms, schedule a complete eye exam
with your eye doctor. While many of these symptoms can be attributed to
other eye conditions, it is important to see your doctor.
When considering your eye care, be sure to stay up to date with the latest
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