Cataract development is a common part of the aging process. Many myths have sprung up regarding cataracts, and dispelling them is a crucial part of patient education. The eye doctors at Florida’s TRES VISION Group explain why some widespread beliefs about cataracts are not true.
Are Cataracts Growths?
Cataracts are not growths. Instead, they are a clouding of the crystalline lens within the eye. Because a cataract is not a growth, it cannot “grow back” post-surgery. That is a common myth.
However, it is possible to experience clouded vision again due to the deterioration of the membrane holding the new lens in place. That is repairable via laser surgery.
All Cataracts Need To Be Surgically Removed
For mature cataracts that interfere with vision, surgery is the only treatment option. But in the early stages of cataracts, many patients have relatively mild symptoms that are often manageable by obtaining new prescriptions for glasses or contact lenses, and using brighter lights in the home or workspace.
Only Older Adults Get Cataracts
While those in their 70s and up are most often treated for cataracts, younger adults may also develop this clouding of the eye. In fact, it is common for those in their 50s and even 40s to have small cataracts. Usually, these cataracts do not affect vision.
Age is not a factor when it comes to other cataract causes, such as eye trauma. Cataracts may also occur after other eye surgeries. The use of certain medications, such as corticosteroids, can increase the odds of cataract development in younger people.
Cataract Surgery Is Risky
Any surgery has risks, but cataract surgery is a relatively low-risk procedure. In fact, it is the most common procedure performed in the U.S. The defective lens is removed and replaced with a synthetic lens. The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) calls cataract surgery one of the safest surgeries in all of medicine. The success rate is above 95 percent.
The entire operation usually takes less than an hour. Incisions are minute, and many patients do not need sutures. By the next day, patients can resume most normal activities. They should not do any heavy lifting and should avoid bending for several weeks, until cleared by the eye doctor.
If you would like to know more about cataracts and treatment options, schedule a personal consultation at TRES VISION Group. We have offices in Melbourne, Merritt Island and Suntree. Contact our office to arrange an appointment. We will answer any questions you have. An educated consumer is our best patient.