Cataracts - KXXV Central Texas News Now


What are Cataracts?

Cataracts account for 48% of correctable blindness in the world.

The lens of your eye is made up of fluid and protein. After age 45 or 50, the protein in your eye can eventually start to clump, forming yellow spots in the lens of your eye. You may not notice it at first, but the older you become, the more likely you are to have this happen. This is the formation of a cataract. You do not have to be a senior citizen to have cataracts; they can start developing after 40, although, usually, at this stage they are not serious enough to have a significant effect on your vision.

Studies show that cataracts effect:

  •     42% of those between the ages of 52 to 64
  •     60% of those between the ages 65 and 74
  •     91% of those between the ages of 75 and 85

Signs of Cataracts

  •     Blurred or cloudy vision
  •     Colors appear faded or dull
  •     Lamps such as headlights or streetlights have glare or halos; sunlight may appear too bright
  •     Poor night vision
  •     Double or multiple vision in one eye; this effect may disappear as the cataract grows
  •     Frequent prescription changes in your eyeglasses or contact lenses

Important Note: These symptoms can indicate other eye problems that may also result in blindness if left untreated. If you have any of these symptoms, please make an appointment with us for a complete eye examination.

Causes of Cataracts

Researchers believe that there are several causes:

  • Aging
  • Diabetes
  • Long-term exposure to ultraviolet light
  • Exposure to radiation
  • Hypertension
  • Smoking
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Eye injuries
  • Genetic factors (a parent or grandparent who had cataracts)

In the early stages of cataracts one sees colors less vibrantly and in the later stages the lens becomes almost opaque and has to be replaced with a clear, artificial lens. This procedure is called Refractive Cataract Surgery.

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