It’s most commonly due to ageing but there are a wide variety of other causes. Over time, yellow-brown pigment is deposited within the lens and this together with disruption of the normal architecture of the lens fibers, leads to reduced transmission of light which leads to visual problems.
People with cataract commonly experience difficulty appreciating colors and changes in contrast, driving, reading, recognizing faces, and experience problems coping with glare from bright lights
- Decreased distant vision
- Frequent change in diopter value
- Color fading and etiolation
- The need of powerful lighting while reading
- Double-vision with single eye
- Sensitivity to light, dazzling
- Night vision impairment
- Difficulty in driving
A cataract is referred to the removal of the natural lens of the eye (also called “crystalline lens”) that developed an opacification. Metabolic changes of the crystalline lens fibers over time lead to the development of the cataract and loss of transparency, causing impairment or vision loss. Many patients first symptoms are strong glare from lights and small light sources at night, along with reduced acuity at low light levels. During cataract surgery, a patient’s cloudy natural lens is removed and replaced with a synthetic lens to restore the lens’s transparency.
Following surgical removal of the natural lens, an artificial intraocular lens implant is inserted (eye surgeons say that the lens is “implanted”). Cataract surgery is generally performed by an ophthalmologist (eye surgeon) in an ambulatory (rather than inpatient) setting, in a surgical center or hospital, using local anesthesia (either topical, peribulbar, or retrobulbar), usually causing little or no discomfort to the patient. Well over 90% of operations are successful in restoring useful vision, with a low complication rate. Day care, volume minimally invasive, small incision of the phacoemulsification with quick post-op recovery has become the standard of care in cataract surgery all over the world.