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Cataract

Cataracts Combined

 

What is a Cataract?

A cataract is formed when the lens inside the eye goes cloudy. This is usually a slow process that occurs naturally with age, but it commonly follows vitrectomy within a year or two. The cataract itself is due to a change in the proteins of the lens, which becomes cloudy and prevents light from fully passing through. Without treatment, this can affect vision and lead to a reduction in eyesight.

What are the Causes of Cataracts?

There are a range of factors that can increase the chances of a cataract developing. These factors include:

  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Previous injury or damage to the eye
  • Steroid treatments
  • Vitrectomy surgery

What are the Symptoms of Cataracts?

There are many symptoms of cataracts, including reduced vision, blurring, glare from bright lights, and increasing short-sightedness. Some cataract symptoms can be treated in the short term by changing glasses and using dark glasses, but the only lasting and most effective treatment is cataract surgery.

Types of Cataract

There are three main types of cataracts: cortical cataract, posterior subcapsular cataract, and nuclear sclerosis cataract.

Cortical Cataract

A cortical cataract occurs in the cortex of the lens (the outside edge that surrounds the central nucleus). Cortical cataract progression is typically characterised by a white opacity that resembles wheel spokes, pointing from the outside edge inwards.

Posterior Subcapsular Cataract

A posterior subcapsular cataract begins as a small cloudy area on the back surface of the lens. It often develops rapidly and causes a halo effect when looking at lights.

Nuclear Cataract

A nuclear cataract is also known as nuclear sclerosis. What is nuclear sclerosis? This is a cloudiness of the central part of the eye lens, and it usually occurs as a result of the natural ageing process of the lens. This type of cataract often impacts upon the eye’s ability to focus.

 

To read more about cataracts, visit the following pages:

Measurements required for cataract surgery – A-scan biometry

Cataract Surgery

 

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