Over half of people over 65 have a cataract in one or both of their eyes.
Cataracts worsen over time and cause vision to deteriorate, making life less enjoyable.
Thankfully, this eye condition can be easily addressed with cataract surgery. The procedure is widely performed and has a success rate of over 95%, with the majority of surgeries having no or very mild complications.
Statistics show that cataracts are one of the most common causes of visual impairment in people aged 65 and older.
This condition is more likely to occur as people age, and by the age of 80, over 50% of individuals will have developed a cataract or undergone cataract surgery.
Cataract surgery has allowed millions of people globally to restore their vision, improving their quality of life.
What Are Cataracts?
The human eye’s lens is typically transparent, but when an individual has cataracts, the lens becomes cloudy.
The lens is found behind the iris and pupil, and it focuses light onto the retina located at the back of the eye. This is where light is converted into nerve signals, which allows you to see.
However, when the lens gets cloudy, the images become hazy and out of focus, resulting in impaired vision.
What Causes Cataracts?
Cataracts can develop as a natural consequence of aging.
Even though they typically affect older people, some individuals are born with congenital cataracts, and others may develop secondary or traumatic cataracts caused by eye surgery, injury, or disease, regardless of age.
Additionally, certain genetic, medical, and lifestyle factors can also contribute to cataract development. Examples include a family history of cataracts, drinking too much alcohol, diabetes, and smoking.
When To Consider Cataract Surgery?
Cataracts don’t develop suddenly, but instead, they start small and gradually impact vision as they grow.
Eye care professionals recommend you undergo cataract surgery when the condition negatively impacts your visual quality and daily activities, such as:
- Playing golf or tennis
- Watching TV
- Recognizing faces
Cataract surgery is also recommended if the condition makes it difficult to treat another eye problem, such as glaucoma.
What is Cataract Surgery?
Cataract surgery is a fairly quick and painless procedure that is commonly performed in America.
It involves removing the cloudy natural lens and implanting a clear, plastic intraocular lens (IOL) that remains in the eye permanently.
IOLs are typically made from plastic and most of them are monofocal lenses that correct distance vision. However, with technological advancements, specialized IOLs are being developed, including multifocal, UV-blocking, and blue light-blocking IOLs. Patients have more options available to them than ever before.
For more information on cataract surgery, please contact Dr. Alisa Thavikulwat today.