3 Reasons An Increasing Number Of Younger People Are Getting Cataract Surgery

Caucasian woman smiling Do you feel like your eyes have aged faster than their years? You may have early cataracts (clouding of the clear lens in the eye) – and if that’s the case, you’re not alone. In fact, more people are getting cataract surgery earlier than ever before. But why? We asked Key-Whitman Eye Center’s President and Chief Surgeon Dr. Jeffrey Whitman to explain.

No. 1: Cataracts can develop at any age.

While most people develop cataracts as they age, that isn’t the case for everybody. As Dr. Whitman explains, “Younger people can develop cataracts. In fact, some babies are born with cataracts that can be corrected with surgery. You can also get cataracts due to trauma to the eye or from taking certain medications like prednisone or steroids. We’re also seeing more cases of cataracts in people in their 40s and 50s due to environmental reasons, possibly too much exposure to UV light from the sun.”

Dr. Whitman explains how high-tech lens implants make a difference for patients of all ages.

No. 2: Cataract surgery is faster and safer than ever before.

Here’s the good news! Thanks to advanced technology, cataract surgery has never been safer than it is today. Bye, bye scalpel. Hello, high-tech, computer-guided laser.

“In the past, cataract surgery was very basic. You had the eye surgeon, the scalpel and the eye. Since the surgery was all human-controlled, it took more time and effort to remove the old lens, which could be much more invasive. Now, with the advent of the femtosecond laser, cataract surgery has become safer and more efficient. Not only do we have the laser to help with the most delicate and microscopic parts of the surgery, but the computer control of that laser gives us the most accurate surgical results we’ve ever had,” says Dr. Whitman.

Learn more about cataract surgery with this informative checklist.

No. 3: High-tech lens implants may drastically reduce dependence on glasses and contacts.

In the early days of cataract surgery, the surgeon removed the cloudy lens and implanted a replacement lens for distance vision. Today, you have high-technology lens implant options that can help with near, middle, and distance vision. In fact, many people end up with better vision than they’ve had in years.

According to Dr. Whitman, “As with any surgery, we can’t literally turn back time, but for those patients who have been very nearsighted, farsighted and dependent on glasses for most of their lives, cataract surgery can be a revelation. With the high-tech lens implants available today, we can give most patients very good quality distance, intermediate and close up vision and often get them out of glasses and contacts the majority of the time.

“Even patients with lousy vision who don’t have cataracts ask me, ‘Hey doc, I’m tired of my glasses. Can I have cataract surgery with those high-tech lens implants so I don’t have to wear my glasses 100 percent of the time?’ Depending on the patient, cataract surgery may help them get out of glasses for most of what they do.”

Dr. Whitman discusses how cataract surgery helps make some patients feel like a kid again.

Find out if you’re a good candidate for cataract surgery today

If your vision is getting progressively worse, don’t delay. See your eye doctor to find out if cataracts – or another eye condition – are to blame. “The sooner we diagnose what’s causing your vision problems, the sooner we can help you see better again. Why wait?” Dr. Whitman says.

Need expert advice about cataracts or other vision problems? Dr. Whitman and his team of experienced eye doctors and cataract surgeons in Dallas, Arlington, Plano and Mesquite are here to help. To learn more or to schedule an appointment, please call (214) 225-2577 or feel free to set up an appointment online.


Jeffrey Whitman, M.D., is a nationally renowned eye surgeon, board certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology. He has been the President and Chief Surgeon of Key-Whitman Eye Centers in Dallas since 1996 and is currently President of the Outpatient Ophthalmic Surgery Society. Dr. Whitman is a frequent participant in clinical trials and is known as a respected researcher, innovator and leader in refractive cataract surgery, LASIK eye surgery and for his extensive experience implanting high-technology lenses. He is frequently called upon to serve on the boards of local and national medical associations and organizations. Dr. Whitman and his wife reside in Dallas and enjoy fitness, playing tennis, snow skiing and traveling.