June is cataract awareness month
For this month’s awareness, we are raising attention to cataracts.
So the first question we might answer is: What is a cataract?
A cataract is a yellowing or thickening of the crystalline lens inside of the eye. The lens of the eye sits right behind the colored part of your eye (the iris). Normally, the lens structure is clear throughout life and it helps you to focus on near objects.
With time and age, it is expected for the lens to become yellow and cloudy. As a result, your vision slowly starts to get blurry, and colors are not as bright as they used to be.
When do cataract occurs?
Age-related cataracts are the most common type of cataract and usually occur after age 60. However, there are some instances where cataracts occur at different times of life.
- Babies can be born with congenital cataracts.
- Inhaled steroids (like with some asthma medications) can cause a side effect of cataracts.
- Blunt force trauma to the eye can cause a cataract.
- And more!
Can cataracts be cured?
There is no current way to prevent cataracts or “cure” cataracts once they have formed. But the good news is that surgical removal of cataracts is fairly straight-forward nowadays. It used to be a big ordeal and a long hospital stay. Now, on average, it takes only about 12 minutes per eye. And visual results can be seen the next day.
The cataract is literally “sucked out” by microscopic instruments. It is replaced with an intraocular lens implant that can have a prescription in it to work similar to LASIK. You’ll still need reading glasses after the surgery, but many people are able to see distance vision quite well without glasses.
At Vision Source Mandan, we can handle both your pre-operative examination to diagnose cataracts, and also handle all your post-operative care. And we’ll refer you to a quality surgeon to get the job done.
Top image by Flickr user National Eye Institute (location) used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharelike 4.0 License. Image has been cropped and modified from original. Image rights state commercial use and modifications allowed when image was obtained on 06/01/2016.
The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.