What is a cataract?

What is a Cataract? | Lexington OphthalmologistCataracts are a common problem that can develop as we age. Although some people are born with cataracts, it is most common to develop them later in life, typically after 65. A cataract occurs when the natural lens inside of the eye gradually becomes harder and gets cloudy. The lens is important because it is the part of the eye that helps focus light on the retina. It is a gradual change that many don’t even notice at first.

Are There Different Kinds of Cataract?

The most common type of cataracts are age-related, with more than half of all Americans 65 and older having them. There are other types though, including:

  • Congenital- Children are sometimes born with cataracts or develop them very early in life.
  • Traumatic- A cataract can sometimes develop following an eye injury. This can happen very soon afterward or even years later.
  • Diabetic- This kind of cataract can develop in people with diabetes or other health issues. It has also been linked to steroid use and radiation therapy.

Contact lenses and eyeglasses can be used to treat early cataract symptoms, but this is a temporary solution. The only real way to treat cataracts is with surgery. Cataract surgery has seen many advancements in recent years and is now one of the safest, most effective and most commonly performed eye surgeries. If you would like to learn more about cataract surgery at Medical Vision Institute, click here, or call us to schedule an appointment.