What Is a Cataract?
A cataract is a clouding of the lens of the eye.
The lens is a clear oval structure with three layers:
the nucleus, the cortex, and the capsule.
It may help to think of the lens structure as a peach, where the
nucleus is the peach pit, the cortex is the flesh of the peach surrounding the pit, and the capsule is the
peach skin, or elastic covering of the lens.
You have a cataract when the nucleus becomes opaque (that is,
it is no longer clear) or when small opacities develop in the cortex that block or scatter light.
What Are the Different Types of Cataract?
There are three types of cataracts that affect different parts of the lens, have different symptoms and cause different vision problems.
- 1.) Nuclear cataract is the most common type of cataract, and is related to the aging process.
The nucleus gradually hardens and becomes opaque, causing difficulty identifying colors and seeing at a distance.
- 2.) Cortical cataract is the next most common type, often affecting people who have diabetes.
Wedge-shaped opacities develop in the cortex, interfering with the passage of light.
This can result in problems with glare and loss of contrast, as well as difficulty with distance and near vision.
- 3.) Subcapsular cataract develops under the back of the capsule or elastic covering of the lens and is common in
people with diabetes or high myopia, adults with retinitis pigmentosa, and in people taking cortisone.
This type of cataract can cause glare sensitivity and blur.
How do I know I have cataracts?
In the early stages, only a doctor can detect a cataract because there may not be any symptoms.
When you do start to notice changes in vision, they may include:
» blurry distance vision, especially outdoors;
» streaks or rays of light seeming to come from headlights and
» instinctively shading your eyes from the sun;
» print appearing faded and lacking in contrast;
» colors appearing faded or changed in hue. Blue may appear to be green and yellow may look white.
Because these may also be symptoms of other eye conditions, it is important to see your eye doctor annually, or whenever you
notice a persistent change in vision.
Take a look at the picture below to see how cataracts can affect your vision.
Why choose the Eye Clinic & Laser Institute for my cataracts surgery?
Cataract surgery is performed on an outpatient basis at our own Surgery Center, the newest,
most state-of-the-art facility of its kind in the area.
A majority of our cataract surgery patients require
no needles since their eyes are numbed using eye drops only.
By using eye drops to numb the eyes rather than
an injection, a cataract surgery patient experiences a much more rapid recovery from treatment and is not
required to wear a patch over the eye.
We use a self-sealing incision that, in a majority of cases, requires no stitches.
The cataract is broken up into pieces using ultrasound waves
in a process known as phacoemulsification.
The cataract is then removed from the eye with a safe suction instrument.
To replace the cloudy lens and restore a patient’s vision, an intraocular lens implant (IOL) is inserted in the eye
during cataract surgery.
Monofocal IOLs provide excellent distance vision and have a long, safe surgical record.
These IOLs make up the vast majority of cataract replacement lenses that the Eye Clinic & Laser Institute patients choose.
What are the benefits of multifocal IOLs?
Multifocal IOLs are designed to provide vision at all ranges, near, intermediate and far, without the need for reading or computer glasses.
To learn more about Multifocal IOLs, see our Crsytalens videos or check out the section on ReZoom.
Considerring cataract surgery? Whether you live in Melbourne, Titusville, Viera, Palm Bay or Merritt Island, the Eye Clinic & Laser Institute has an office near you! It all starts with filling out the Contact Form on this page or calling (321)453-3937.
Call today and make your appointment for the best vision of your life!