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Cataract

Definition:

A cataract is a progressive clouding of the natural lens which blocks the light passing to the retina. The lens is made mostly of water and proteins. Protein arranges itself to allow light rays to pass through and to focus the rays onto the retina.

Sometimes, protein clumps together, clouding small areas of the lens and blocking some light from reaching the retina. This clouding is called a cataract.

The rate of progression of cataract is unpredictable. Some cataracts worsen significantly within few weeks, others remain unchanged for many years.

The process of ageing continues throughout life and as a result the lens in our eye is also aging. The changes develop in both eyes, one eye may be earlier than the other.

Causes:

  • Age (90%).
  • Radiation.
  • Exposure to UV light 9sunlight), smoke and alcohol.
  • Steroid intake.
  • Systemic disease (E.g., Diabetis).
  • Trauma/injury to the eye.

Symptoms:

  • Cloudy or blurry vision.
  • Difficulty in reading.
  • Faded colours.
  • Poor night vision.
  • Problems with light, including headlights that seem too bright, glare from lamps or bright sunlight, or a halo around lights.
  • Double or multiple vision.
  • Frequent change of eyeglasses or contact lenses.

Treatment:

“SURGERY IS THE ONLY TREATMENT OPTION”

A cataract should be removed when vision loss interferes with your daily activities, such as driving, reading, or watching TV. Surgery consists of removing the cataract and replacing it with an artificial lens. Different types of surgeries can be done. Your ophthalmologist will discuss these surgical options with you and decide which type of lens replacement is suitable for you.

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