What is a cataract?


What is a cataract?

screen-shot-2016-09-12-at-10-36-56-amA cataract is a clouding of the lens inside the eye that may result in poor vision.
Most cataracts form as a result of ageing and long-term exposure to ultraviolet light.

What are the symptoms?

  • Cataracts are usually associated with:
  • Slow and painless blurring of vision that may not improve with prescription glasses
  • Increased sensitivity to bright lights, such as while driving at night.
  • Changes in how colour is seen – objects may appear to have a yellow or brown tinge.

Who is at risk?

Age: for each decade over 50 years of age the risk is more than doubles

  • Exposure to sunlight
  • Smokers
  • Those who have used corticosteroid medications for long periods
  • People who have had an eye injury

What can be done?

  • New prescription glasses may help to improve vision for some people. However, as cataracts worsen, surgery may be required to restore vision
  • Cataract surgery is performed by an ophthalmologist. The cloudy lens in the eye is replaced with a new synthetic one.
  • Cataract surgery is common, very safe, and is usually done as a day surgery procedure under local anaesthesia.