At Columbia, we treat all forms of cataracts, including:
- Nuclear sclerotic cataracts
- Cortical cataracts
- Posterior subcapsular cataracts
Although most cataracts are related to aging, there are other types of cataracts. They include:
- Traumatic Cataracts – These are cataracts that develop after an injury to the eye. In some cases, cataracts might not develop until years after the injury.
- Congenital Cataracts – These are cataracts that develop in childhood or in utero. In some cases, these cataracts are so small that they do not affect vision. If they do affect vision, an eye doctor will remove the lenses from the eyes.
- Radiation Cataracts – These are cataracts that can develop after radiation exposure.
A cataract occurs when protein in the eye lens clumps together and forms a cloud. Over time, the cataract might grow larger and cloud more of the lens, making it harder for the person to see. Some risk factors include:
- Age – The risk of cataract increases with age, but a person does not have to be elderly to have an age-related cataract. People can have age-related cataracts in their 40s and 50s. But during middle age, most cataracts are minor and do not affect vision. After age 60, it becomes more common for cataracts to harm vision.
- Certain diseases, such as diabetes.
- Lifestyle choices, such as smoking and excessive alcohol use.
- Environmental factors, such as prolonged exposure to sunlight.
There are a few things you can do to reduce your risk. You can:
- Protect your eyes from ultraviolet light by wearing sunglasses and a hat.
- Quit smoking if you smoke.
- Eat a healthy diet as good nutrition can help reduce the risk of age-related cataracts.
- If you are age 60 or older, you should also have a comprehensive dilated eye exam at least once every one to two years.
The most common symptoms of a cataract are:
- Cloudy or blurry vision.
- Colors appear faded.
- Intense glare from headlights, lamps, or sunlight and light might appear with a halo effect.
- Problems with night vision.
- Double vision or seeing multiple images in one eye.
- Frequent need to change eyeglasses or contacts prescriptions every few months.
A cataract can be detected during a comprehensive eye exam. This exam might include:
- Visual Acuity Test – Using an eye chart to measure how well you see at various distances.
- Dilated Eye Exam – Pupils are dilated with eye drops, and then a special magnifying lens is used to examine the retina and optic nerve for signs of damage and other eye problems.
- Tonometry – An instrument is used to measure the pressure inside the eye.
Why Choose Columbia?
Columbia ophthalmologists are at the forefront of modern cataract surgery, offering several advanced methods of removing cataracts and implanting new lenses into the eye. Our team of experienced and compassionate cataract surgeons uses the latest, most advanced, and innovative technology in state-of-art facilities to ensure you are comfortable before, during, and after your surgery.