About Cataract Surgery
The development of cataracts No one knows for sure why the eye’s lens changes as we age, forming cataracts. But over time the lens, which lies behind the iris and the pupil, begins to cloud. This clouding of the lens is a cataract. In a healthy eye, the lens works much like a camera focusing light onto the retina at the back of the eye. It adjusts the eye’s focus letting us see things clearly. The lens is mostly made of water and protein. The protein is arranged in a precise way that keeps the lens clear and lets light pass through it. As we age, some of the protein may clump together and start to cloud a small area of the lens. This is a cataract and over time it may grow larger and cloud more of the area making it difficult to see clearly.
Some of the symptoms of cataracts are: slightly blurred vision, like looking through a cloudy piece of glass; light sensitivity causing glare and sensitivity to lights at night; or diminished brightness of colors. The only way to be sure you have a cataract and to determine the proper treatment is to see your doctor for an eye examination. Initially, visual aids such as updated glasses, magnification and appropriate lighting may improve your vision. Eventually, you may be advised to consider cataract surgery, a surgical treatment to remove the clouded lens and in most cases replace it with a clear, plastic intraocular lens (IOL). Cataract surgery is the most frequently performed surgery in the United States with over 1.5 million surgeries done each year. Nine out of 10 people who have cataract surgery restore their vision to between 20/40 and 20/20, good enough to pass a driver’s test in most states.