What is a cataract?

The eye’s lens is mostly made up of water and protein, but as we age, some of that protein in the lens begins to clump together, resulting in cloudy patches of vision. This is called a cataract.

What does a cataract do to my vision?

As the cataract grows, vision worsens. Cataracts usually develop slowly and are painless, though the symptoms are troubling, and ultimately can lead to blindness if not removed.

When should you worry about cataracts?

Cataracts affect nearly 22 million Americans age 40 and older. According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology more than half of all Americans have cataracts by age 80. Adults get cataracts usually due to aging, exposure to sunlight and can also be affected by smoking, improper nutrition, systemic diseases, injury to the eye or certain medications.

Symptoms include:

  • Blurred, foggy or cloudy vision; a sense of film over your eyes
  • Blues and greens seem faded
  • Difficulty reading small print
  • Double vision
  • Seeing halos around lights at night
  • Are there new ways to correct cataracts?

Laser cataract surgery is a simple and relatively painless procedure that is done on an out-patient basis. Cataract removal is the most frequently performed surgery in the U.S. and nine out of 10 patients who have cataract surgery regain between 20/20 and 20/40 vision. New bladeless, computer-controlled laser refractive cataract surgery, LenSx®, offers greater accuracy and precision than previous methods.

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