A cataract is a clouding of the lens of the eye which can affect vision. Initially, cataracts may affect the vision subtly. One of the first signs you may notice would be a change in the sharpness of your vision. Cataracts tend to “grow” slowly, so vision typically gets worse gradually.
Over time, the clouding of the lens increases making it more difficult to see and your vision my blur or dull. Cataracts can also cause discoloration of your lens, so differentiating between colors such as blue and green may occur. Most cataracts are related to aging. By age 80, more than half of all Americans either have a cataract or have had cataract surgery. A cataract can occur in either or both eyes. Cataracts can also occur due to injury and certain medical conditions such as diabetes.
Symptoms of cataracts include:
• Clouded, blurred or dim vision
• Increasing difficulty with vision at night
• Sensitivity to light and glare
• Need for brighter light for reading and other activities
• Seeing “halos” around lights
• Frequent changes in eyeglass or contact lens prescription
• Fading or yellowing of colors
• Double vision in a single eye
The diagnosis of a cataract is made at the time of a complete examination to confirm the presence of the cataract and exclude other possible conditions impairing the vision. Once your doctor has diagnosed a cataract, the only means to improve the vision is surgery. Medications cannot be used to treat cataracts and glasses may be of limited benefit.
Cataract removal is one of the most common operations performed in the United States. It is also one of the safest and most effective types of surgery. Measurements are made of the eyes prior to the surgery so that an implant of correct power is calculated to replace the focusing power of the human lens (which is removed). The implant is a plastic lens which is permanent and need not be replaced later. The surgeon can select a lens that can reduce your dependence on eyeglasses.
The surgery is performed as an outpatient procedure (no hospital stay) and the actual surgery takes less than 15 minutes typically. Each eye is a separate surgery and normally they are spaced by several weeks. After the surgery eye drop medications are used to insure quick healing.
For more information please visit www.northshoreeyes.com. For an appointment please call our Avon office at 440-653-8091, the Sandusky office at 419-626-8181 or the Avon Lake office at 440-455-3080. The offices are located at 36711 American Way in Avon, 1200 Prospect Street in Sandusky and 32730 Walker Road, Building J, in Avon Lake. Follow them on Facebook @northshoreeyecareohio.