A cataract is a clouding of the lens in the eye. This condition is extremely common, affecting more than half of all Americans age 65 and over and may be corrected through surgery.
Cataracts occur when there is a buildup of protein in the lens that makes it cloudy. This buildup prevents light from passing through the lens, causing some loss of vision. It is not known what causes the buildup of protein responsible for clouding the lens.
Since patients with Cataracts often have no early symptoms, Fraser Eye Care Center and The Eye Care Center of Port Huron recommends routine eye care appointments, particularly if you are over age 45, have diabetes and/or if you have a family history of Cataracts or are at risk for other eye diseases.
Some risk factors for Cataracts include cigarette smoking, medications such as corticosteroids, eye injuries, sun exposure, diabetes, obesity, heavy alcohol consumption, and age over 65 years.
Symptoms of Cataracts
Cataracts often form slowly and cause few symptoms. When symptoms are present, they can include:
- Vision that is cloudy, blurry, foggy or filmy
- Sudden nearsightedness
- Changes in the way color is seen, particularly the color yellow
- Problems driving at night because oncoming headlights are distracting
- Problems with glare
- Double vision
- Sudden temporary improvement in close-up vision
Types of Cataracts
Age-Related Cataracts, as the name suggests, develops as a result of aging and is the most common form of Cataracts. Seventy percent of individuals over 75 years of age have Age-Related Cataracts.
Congenital Cataracts are sometimes found in babies as a result of an infection they had before prior to birth. Congenital Cataracts can also develop in young children.
Some Cataracts may develop as a result of other diseases, like diabetes, or long-term exposure to toxic substances, certain medications (such as corticosteroids or diuretics), ultraviolet light, and radiation.
Traumatic Cataracts may form after injury to the eye.
Fraser Eye Care Center and the Eye Care Center of Port Huron specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of Cataracts. During a complete eye care examination, our doctors and staff will test vision acuity, dilate pupils, and thoroughly examine the structures of the eye, using state-of-the-art technology. If Cataracts are found, additional non-invasive tests are performed.
There are many levels of Cataracts development, as well as treatment choices available once a Cataract is diagnosed. Our trained eye care professionals will review options and help patients determine a path for treatment that is meets the patient’s needs.