Cataract - Causes and Symptoms
Dr. Leslie Ravi Kumar
Kalyan nagar, Bengaluru Feb 14, 2017
WHAT is a CATARACT?
A cataract is a dense, cloudy or opaque area that develops in the lens of the eye and interferes with your vision. Our natural eye lens is responsible for vision and focus and is made up of mostly water and protein. As we grow older, some of the protein may clump together and start to cloud a small area of the lens, leading to cataract.
Most cataracts are age related, causing the lens to become opaque or cloudy. However, other factors also play a role in the development of cataract. Sometimes cataracts could be a birth defect or occur shortly after.
- An overproduction of oxidants
- Ultraviolet radiation
- Medications & Drugs
- Previous eye injury or surgery
- Family history of cataract
- Nutritional deficiency
- Old age
- High blood pressure
Common signs and symptoms of cataract include:
- Blurred or cloudy vision
- Difficulty seeing at night
- Colors look faded
- Increased sensitivity to glare
- Problems while driving
- Halos surrounding lights
- Double vision in the affected eye
- Frequent need to change prescription glasses or contact lenses
Cataract treatment is dependent on the level of visual impairment they have caused. When a cataract has progressed to the point that it affects a person's ability to do normal everyday activity, surgery may be required. Cataract surgery involves removing the lens of the eye and replacing it with an artificial lens that has the natural focusing ability of a healthy lens.
Phacoemulsification: A 2.2mm incision is made on the side of the cornea (the black portion of the eye), inserting a tiny probe into the eye. This device emits ultrasound waves that soften and break up the lens so that it can be suctioned out. Foldable lens is implanted through the same incision.
Small Incision Cataract Surgery(SICS): This procedure requires making a larger incision on the side of the cornea and then removing the cloudy core of the lens in one piece. The rest of the lens is removed by suction and replaced by an intraocular lens.
TYPES OF INTRAOCULAR LENS:
- MONOFOCAL LENS: Focused for distance. Will need glasses for reading purpose.
- MULTIFOCAL LENS: Has multiple rings in the lens, some focused for distance while some for near vision. No glasses are needed.
- ACCOMMODATIVE LENS: Focused for distance, intermediate distance and far distance.