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What is a Cataract?

What is a Cataract?

Over half of those over 65 have some cataract development and most cases can be treated successfully with surgery. A cataract is not a skin that grows over the eye. A cataract is a clouding of part of the eye called the lens. Vision becomes blurred or dim because light cannot pass through the clouded lens to the back of the eye.

What causes a cataract?

Cataracts can form at any age, but most often develop as people get older. In younger people they can result from an injury, certain drugs, long-standing inflammation or illnesses such as diabetes.

What are the symptoms?

Symptoms can include:

  • Blurred Vision
  • Seeing Double
  • Poor Vision in Bright Light
  • Change of Colour Vision

What can be done?

The most effective treatment for cataracts is a small operation to remove the cloudy lens. Diets or drugs have not been shown to slow or stop the development of the cataract.

What is a lens implant?
When the cloudy lens has been surgically removed it is usually replaced by a plastic lens so that the eye can focus properly. Occasionally a doctor will decide an eye is not suitable for a lens implant. In these cases contact lenses or special glasses will be prescribed instead.

What happens after the operation?
Your sight will usually improve within a few days, although complete healing may take several months. It is a good idea to have some help at home if you can, especially if you find it difficult to put your eye drops in.