Focusing on Cataract Awareness Month

Cataracts may not be top of mind for everyone, but it is never too early to learn about this incredibly common eye condition. Although most prevalent in adults over the age of 60, cataracts can occur at any age. In most cases, cataracts are a normal part of aging and are easily dealt with through cataract surgery. Even if you are not currently experiencing a cataract yourself, chances are you know someone who is.

June is Cataract Awareness Month, and we are excited to share some of the most advanced options available for cataract patients today! Cataracts can result in difficulty seeing clearly, decreased quality of life, and even blindness, if left untreated. In fact, cataracts are a leading cause of blindness worldwide. Fortunately, cataract surgery allows patients to regain their sight and even potentially correct other visual concerns at the same time. Knowing more about this topic can help you or a loved one reach the best visual outcome possible during this inevitable stage of life. So, let’s begin with a basic understanding of what cataracts are and how they form.

 

What are Cataracts?

Inside your eye there is a natural lens that allows you to focus on objects nearby or far away. That lens must remain clear in order to focus on objects and see clearly. When cataracts develop, this lens hardens and becomes cloudy, resulting in blurred vision, loss of colors, intense glare at night, and other visual difficulties. Cataract patients often describe it as if they are looking through a foggy window which gets progressively worse over time. Other symptoms can include:

  • Clouded, blurry vision
  • Increased difficulty seeing at night
  • Seeing “halos” around lights
  • Fading or yellowing of colors
  • Need for brighter light when reading, crafting, or other near activities
  • Sensitivity to light or glare
  • Double vision in a single eye

 

The image below shows a sectional view of the inside of a healthy eye.
Diagram of a normal eye

 

The image below shows a section view of the inside of an eye that has a cataract. Notice the clouding of the circular lens in the middle of the eye.
Diagram of an eye with a cataract

 

When do Cataracts Form?

Cataracts typically begin forming around age 40, but visual changes may not be noticeable until closer to age 60. By age 65, roughly 90% of people have developed a cataract. Though less common, cataracts have also been known to appear at birth or develop anywhere from infancy to middle-age, due to rare medical conditions. In most cases, cataracts are simply considered a natural result of aging.

Advanced Solutions For Cataract Patients

As one of the most performed procedures today, cataract surgery is now quicker, safer, and more effective than ever before. Cataract surgery not only removes cataracts, but today’s medical advancements also offer the unique opportunity to reduce or eliminate dependence on glasses!

During cataract surgery, the cataract is removed and your eye’s natural lens is replaced with a new, artificial intraocular lens (IOL). Patients have the choice between a standard monofocal IOL or a premium lens such as a toric or multifocal IOL. Premium lenses are typically not covered by insurance, but they offer life-changing improvements to your vision.

Spectacle Freedom with the Light Adjustable Lens™

The Light Adjustable Lens™ is among the most advanced multifocal lenses available. Unlike all other “fixed” lenses, the Light Adjustable Lens™, or LAL®, can be adjusted after cataract surgery using a non-invasive Light Delivery Device™ (LDD™). With this revolutionary lens, light treatments can be fine-tuned to achieve 20/20 vision or better, potentially eliminating your need for glasses entirely!

Below are a few testimonials from actual Wilmington Eye patients who received the Light Adjustable Lens™ during cataract surgery.

“Best thing I have done in a long time, 2 Light Adjustable Lens to cure my cataracts. Dr. P was awesome and his nurses were even better. Loved every part of this experience including 20/20 vision again.” – Martin G.

“Both the Wilmington and Southport offices of Wilmington Eye are AWESOME! The staff and doctors are not only personable but truly professional and organized. I am thrilled with the outcomes of my cataract surgery and new LAL lenses and would recommend Wilmington Eye to anyone!” – Roland P.

Ultimately, your surgeon will help you determine the lens best suited to your lifestyle and visual goals. Choosing a premium lens such as the Light Adjustable Lens™ can result in visual freedom for the rest of your life!

The unavoidable nature of cataract surgery may sound disappointing at first, but as cataracts diminish visual quality over time, patients often eagerly anticipate this milestone procedure. Cataract surgery can be an opportunity to see better than ever before, and our board-certified ophthalmic surgeons have helped thousands regain visual clarity. To learn more about cataract surgery and the Light Adjustable Lens™, schedule an appointment with us today.