What Is A Cataract?
Cataract is the loss of clarity of the human lens . The human lens is naturally transparent and situated behind the pupil . This loss of transparency causes visual impairment. Treatment involves cataract removal and artificial lens implantation (intra ocular lens ). Lens implants can eliminate or reduce ones need for spectacle correction.
Cataract surgery is often performed under local anaesthetic and sedation . In certain cases it is performed under general anaesthesia.
Symptoms Of A Cataract?
A cataract starts out small and at first has little effect on your vision. The type of cataract you have will affect exactly which symptoms you experience and how soon they will occur.
For example, with a nuclear cataract, it can bring about a temporary improvement in your near vision, called “second sight”. This is unfortunately, short-lived and will disappear as the cataract worsens. On the other hand, though, a subcapsular cataract may not produce any symptoms until it’s well-developed.
- Hazy, blurred vision – Almost looks like you’re looking through a cloudy piece of glass
- Light from the sun or a lamp seem too bright or glaring
- Colours may not appear as bright as they once did
- Light sensitivity during the day
- Glare with night driving
- Blurred writing on the TV, double vision, ghosting of images
- Difficulty with reading, poor distance, and night vision
- Poor vision with current eyeglasses or contact lenses
What Causes Cataracts?
Our eye’s lens is mostly made up of water and protein. The protein is arranged in a precise way that keeps the lens clear and lets light pass through. But as we age, some of the protein may clump together and start to cloud a small area of the lens. This is a cataract. Over time, it may grow larger and cloud more of the lens, causing weak vision clarity.
It is still unknown as to why the eye’s lens changes as we age, forming cataracts. Besides advancing age, cataract risk factors, as researched worldwide, include:
- Ultraviolet radiation from sunlight and other sources
- Prolonged use of corticosteroid medications
- Statin medicines used to reduce cholesterol
- Previous eye injury or inflammation
- Previous eye surgery
- Hormone replacement therapy
- Significant alcohol consumption
- High myopia (near-sightedness)
- Family history
When attending your first consultation, please bring a driver or someone to fetch you after the consultation
All medical aids and Hospital Plans cover cataract surgery . DR Bawa is Designated service provider for Discovery Health.
On arrival on your day of surgery, you will be given a mild sedative to help you relax. Anaesthetic (numbing) eye drops are also applied to your eye to prevent any discomfort. Your experienced surgeon will remove your clouded lens and, in most cases, replace the lens with a clear, plastic intraocular lens (IOL).
Uncomplicated cataract surgery often takes no longer than about 10 minutes. After the surgery, you will be required to rest in a recovery area until you are less groggy from sedation or anaesthesia. Therefore, it could take about 30 minutes to an hour.
Most patients may achieve eyeglass independence or reduced reliance on eyeglasses for distance after surgery. Reading glasses will be needed after surgery