What is a cataract?
A cataract is a clouding of part of your eye called the lens. Your vision becomes blurred because the cataract is like frosted glass, preventing sharp accurate focusing of an image on your retina reducing your clarity of vision.
What causes a cataract?
Cataracts can form at any age. Most develop as we get older, many people over 60 have some amount of cataract. Long term exposure to ultraviolet light can be a factor. You can be born with cataracts or acquire cataracts due to “trauma” (a blow to the head or an accident). In younger people cataracts can result from conditions such as diabetes, certain medications can induce them and other longstanding eye problems.
How does cataract affect your sight?
This is very common. You may notice that your sight has become blurred or misty, or that your glasses appear dirty and you are cleaning them constantly, but it is not the spectacle lens that is hazy, it is the natural lens in your eye.
Your colour vision may become washed out or “faded” so colours will not be reported as being true compared to as an observer who has normal vision or has had them removed and replaced with implanted lenses.
How is a cataract treated?
80% of all cataract surgery is performed on patients aged 70 and over.
A straightforward operation to remove the clouded lens and replace it with an artificial one is the only effective way to treat cataracts. However, you may not require surgery if your daily routine remains unaffected. Following your initial consultation, we at Silver & Rose Opticians & Audiology can refer you for surgery. According to the National Cataract Survey, 80% of all cataract surgery is performed on patients aged 70 years and over.
The procedure to remove the clouded lens and implant a small artificial intraocular lens (IOL) is generally carried out under local anaesthetic.
Some patients have the presence of cataracts but don’t actually require surgery and in many cases, an up to date modified prescription can improve your vision to enable you to still legally drive and function normally.
After surgery, you will be given anti-inflammatory eye drops and antibiotics to ensure that the eye does not get infected. You will normally be allowed home on the day of your operation and your sight should be restored within a day or two.
When you have finished your course of treatment we will re-examine your eyes and prescribe glasses accordingly if required.
For more information on cataracts, ring us on 01704831117 or call into the Practice