Thursday, August 21, 2014

It’s All a Blur: Symptoms of and Treatment for Cataracts

According to the National Eye Institute, more than 50 percent of Americans will have either a cataract or cataract surgery by age 80. A cataract clouds over the lens of the eye, impairing vision. Most cataracts are caused by aging, but they can also form after an eye injury, exposure to certain types of radiation, or as a side effect of another disease. Though rare, some babies are born with cataracts, a condition known as congenital cataracts. Individuals who have diabetes, smoke or have a family history of cataracts are at a higher risk of suffering from them.

Cataract symptoms include:

  • Blurry or clouded vision
  • Double vision
  • Difficulty seeing at night
  • Apparent fading of colors
  • Glare, the appearance of halos around lights or perception that headlights, indoor lights or the sun appear very bright
  • The need to change glasses or contact prescriptions often due to vision changes

It is recommended that all adults begin getting baseline screening exams, complete with pupil dilation, beginning at age 40 so that early warning signs of eye disease, such as cataracts, may be identified quickly.

Early on, treatment of cataracts may include a prescription for new glasses or special glasses with high magnification, adjusting lighting in your home and/or using sunglasses with an anti-glare coating. When more conservative approaches are not effective, surgery to remove the cloudy lens and replace it with an artificial lens is the next viable option. Fortunately, cataract surgery is considered to be highly successful. It is one of the most commonly performed operations in the United States, and advancements continue to make this procedure safer while offering patients better outcomes.

In addition to offering conservative approaches to cataract symptom treatment, GBMC offers state-of-the-art cataract surgery that can often be performed without shots or stitches, allowing patients to resume regular activities within a few days. To learn more about GBMC’s ophthalmology services, visit

No comments:

Post a Comment