To know the symptoms of cataract, one should know the types of cataract, for each kind of cataracts presents itself with different symptoms.
TYPES OF CATARACT
- SUBCAPSULAR CATARACT: The kind of cataract that occurs at the back of the lens is called subcapsular cataract. Diabetic patients and those on high doses of steroids are more likely to develop a subcapsular cataract.
- NUCLEAR CATARACT: The cataract that is formed deep in the central part of the lens (nucleus) is named nuclear cataract. It is usually associated with aging.
- CORTICAL CATARACT: This kind of cataract is characterized by white, wedge-like opacities that start in the periphery of the lens and work their way to the center in a spoke-like fashion. This type of cataract occurs in the part of the lens that surrounds the central nucleus, called the cortex.
SYMPTOMS OF CATARACT
Cataract presents itself with the initial symptom of blurry or unclear vision.
- Loss of contrast sensitivity
- Less vivid color vision
- Disturbing glare
- Halos around lights
- Double vision
The type of cataract you have will affect exactly which symptoms you experience and how soon they will occur. When a nuclear cataract first develops, it can bring about a temporary improvement in your near vision, called “second sight.”
Unfortunately, the improved vision is short-lived and will disappear as the cataract worsens. On the other hand, a subcapsular cataract may not produce any symptoms until it’s well-developed.
Many people consider poor vision an inevitable fact of aging, but cataract surgery is a simple, relatively painless procedure to regain vision.Cataract surgery is very successful in restoring vision. During surgery, the surgeon will remove your clouded lens and in most cases replace it with a clear, plastic intraocular lens (IOL). New IOLs are being developed all the time to make the surgery less complicated for surgeons and the lenses more helpful to patients.
What is a cataract?
A cataract is a cloudiness of the eye’s natural lens, which lies between the front and back areas of the eye, directly behind the pupil.
Are cataracts found only in older people?
Most cataracts develop slowly over time and affect people over age 50. In rare cases, infants can have congenital cataracts. These usually are related to the mother having German measles, chickenpox, or another infectious disease during pregnancy; but sometimes they are inherited.
Is cataract surgery serious?
Yes, it is serious. However, cataract surgery is the most commonly performed type of surgery. Many cataract surgeons have an experience of having performed several thousand procedures. Therefore, the risk of something going wrong is very unlikely.
How is a cataract removed?
A small incision is made in the front surface of the eye with a scalpel or a laser. A circular hole is then cut in the front of the thin membrane (anterior capsule) that encloses the eye’s natural lens. Typically the lens is then broken into smaller pieces with a laser or an ultrasonic device so it can be more easily removed from the eye.
Once the entire lens is removed, it is replaced with a clear implant called an intraocular lens (IOL) to restore vision. In most cases, the eye heals quickly after surgery without stitches. Today, several steps in cataract surgery can be performed with a computer-controlled laser instead of hand-held instruments.
What is a “secondary cataract”?
In a minority of cases (perhaps 20 to 30 percent), months or years after cataract surgery, the posterior portion of the lens capsule that is left inside the eye during surgery for safety reasons becomes hazy, causing vision to again become blurred.This “secondary cataract” (also called posterior capsular opacification) usually can be easily treated with a less invasive follow-up procedure called a YAG laser capsulotomy. In most cases, this procedure effectively restores clear vision.
Is eyewear still necessary after cataract surgery?
Rarely does anyone have to wear thick, heavy eyeglasses after cataract surgery these days? Most modern cataract procedures replace your eye’s natural lens with an intraocular lens (IOL) that often can correct your distance vision to 20/20 without glasses or contact lenses.In fact, premium multifocal IOLs and accommodating IOLs can even eliminate your need for reading glasses after cataract surgery.
How much does cataract surgery cost?
The cost of cataract surgery varies from one doctor to the next; it also depends on the type of procedure and intraocular lens you and your cataract surgeon decide is best for your needs.Medicare and most health insurance plans will cover cataract surgery and ordinary intraocular lenses.
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