A cataract is a partial or complete clouding of the lens, which when healthy is completely transparent. Due to the opacity of the lens thus formed, less light and poorer quality images reaches the retina, so the visual acuity decreases and vision becomes blurred.
The development of cataracts is a slow, painless process, often perceived only after several months or years, when the vision is no longer as it used to be.
Symptoms of cataracts may include:
- Changing of the power of the glasses becomes more often
- Colors become duller, fainter
- Hues become warmer
- Contours appear blurred
- Objects are duplicated, when watched with one eye
- Glare and photosensitivity may occur
- The night lights becomes distracting
- Vision is impaired in low light conditions
- Vision will gradually become more hazy, grayer, blurred
- Impaired vision develops after a while
In case of any visual impairment, an ophthalmologist’s examination is recommended as soon as possible, as the above symptoms are not limited to cataracts, they can also occur in other eye diseases that might require emergency medical care!
Causes of cataracts
Cataracts most commonly develop as part of the aging process of the lens of the eye, however, a number of factors can increase the chances of it. High levels of ionizing radiation (such as UV), diabetes, certain medications (such as corticosteroids) or eye injuries increase the incidence of the disease.
The only way of treating cataracts is surgery.