Even with a common procedure like cataract surgery, there are many questions about it. Patients who need cataract surgery may not have a clue what the procedure entails.
Thankfully, it’s an extremely safe surgery! It’s a very well understood surgery. It’s also no coincidence that it’s one of the most performed surgeries in the world.
Cataracts usually affect those that are in their forties or older. But cataracts can also be a side effect from eye surgery or injury.
It’s also possible that they can be a genetic condition that affects infants as a birth defect. Wondering if you’re too young for cataract surgery? Keep reading to learn why it’s not possible!
What Is A Cataract?
Let’s start with the basics. A cataract is a mass of proteins that build up on the lens of the eye over time. When a cataract first forms, you may not even know it’s there. It’s only as the cataract begins to develop and ripen that you’ll have vision loss.
This is because more proteins clump up on the lens. Eyesight will become blurry, distorted, and eventually become tinted yellow or brown. When you begin noticing severe vision loss, it may be time for cataract surgery.
Cataracts are a part of aging—everyone will get them at some point as long as they live long enough. Though you cannot prevent cataracts, you can slow down their progression. Bad habits like UV radiation, eating unhealthy, and eye conditions speed up cataracts.
Want to slow down cataract development? Wear sunglasses, eat foods rich in antioxidants, and keep your blood sugar stable. And of course, make sure to schedule eye appointments with Dr. Pinke in Shelton, CT regularly!
Cataract Surgery Basics
During cataract surgery, a procedure called refractive lens exchange removes cataracts. RLE removes the entire lens of the eye where the cataract is. The lens is replaced with an artificial lens, known as an IOL.
Before starting cataract surgery, you will be under a local anesthetic. This is to make sure you don’t feel any pain during the procedure! First, a laser creates an opening in the surface of the cornea.
The tissue covering the opening is left partially attached and opens like a trapdoor. This allows the flap to close and heal naturally after the surgery. This reduces the amount of time it takes to recover from cataract surgery!
The surgeon will remove your lens with a process known as phacoemulsification. During phacoemulsification, the lens is gently broken apart.
It is then removed from the eye using suction. Once the lens has been fully removed, an IOL takes the place of your natural lens.
Though cataracts are normally an age-related condition, they can develop at any time. If you’re suffering from vision loss, cataracts could be the culprit behind it.
Looking for answers to your cataract questions? Schedule a consultation with Dr. Pinke at the Pinke Eye Center in Shelton, CT today! Vision loss due to cataracts doesn’t have to be permanent. Get ready to see the world around you again!