A cataract is the clouding or an opaque area of the ordinarily clear lens of the eye. This can interfere with vision. Sometimes a cataract is very small and affects the your vision very minimally or not at all. However if a cataract is suspected or diagnosed, it is recommended that it be monitored closely on a regular check-up schedule to prevent developmental damage.

The lens in your eye works similar to the the way the lens in your camera works. Its job is to focus the light onto your retina and it adjusts your focus so that you can see things clearly close up and far away. The lens is basically made up of water and protein. A healthy eye has carefully arranged proteins that let light pass through. And it is this protein that can clump together and cloud up and area of the lens and create a cataract.

3 Types of Cataracts

Subcapsular at the back of the lens, diabetes or steroid medications can increase the risk of this type of cataract
Nuclear in the central zone of the lens, this is most associated with aging
Cortical wedge-like opacities that begin in the periphery of the lens and move inward rather like spokes on a bike wheel.

The symptoms of a cataract starts with blurred vision. When a cataract begins, it can have little to no affect on your vision but as it grows your vision will get progressively blurry. Light may begin to look too bright or seem to have an extra glare, or colors might not be as bright as before.

Althought doctors are not 100% sure why there can be a change in the eyes lenses as we age, they do agree on a number of things that can contribute to the development of a cataract.

  • Age
  • Ultraviolet radiation from sunlight and other sources
  • Diabetes
  • Hypertension
  • Obesity
  • Smoking
  • Prolonged use of corticosteroid medications
  • Statin medicines used to reduce cholesterol
  • Previous eye injury or inflammation
  • Previous eye surgery
  • Hormone replacement therapy
  • Significant alcohol consumption
  • High myopia
  • Family history

If you suspect developing cataracts, or thing you may be experiencing the symptoms of a cataract, speak to one of the doctors in our office as soon as you can. Call us at (248) 539-4800 or request an appointment online.

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