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Cataract Surgery

An introduction to cataracts

  • A cataract is natural clouding of the lens inside your eye that slowly develops as you age.
  • Cataracts can affect one or both eyes.
  • Faded colors, blurry vision, halos around light, trouble with bright lights, and trouble seeing at night are all symptoms of cataracts.
  • The only cure for cataracts is cataract surgery.

Cataracts symptoms and lifestyle impact

As we age, the lens of the eye becomes mistier and opaque. It’s similar to looking through a fog, or patchy vision, that makes it harder to focus. When you are young, the lens is clear, but as you age, the lens becomes more and more opaque than before.

A cataract begins yellowish in colour, then turns brown, and then eventually it goes white. As a cataract changes, it impairs the amount of light that can get into your eye. Removing the cataract allows you to see more light and enables you to focus again.

Causes of Cataracts

Cataracts are common – in fact we probably all know at least one or two people who have had cataracts treated. Nearly 1/3 of people over 65 have a cataract. The most frequent cause of cataracts is age­-related degeneration of the lens in the eye. If you have a cataract, you will progressively lose your vision in time.

There are many risk factors for developing a cataract. We list a few of them below:

  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Uveitis (inflammation of the middle layer of the eye, the Uvea)
  • Excess alcohol intake
  • More common in women
  • Steroid medication
  • An injury to the eye
  • Ultraviolet light exposure

Causes of cataracts in younger patients include:

  • Congenital (genetic problems such as galactosaemia)
  • Developmental issues
  • Acquired issues (trauma, diabetes, after radiotherapy)
  • Infections after birth (such as toxoplasmosis)
  • Infections before birth (such as Rubella, Cytomegalovirus, Herpes simplex)

These are just some of the causes of cataracts in both adults and children – there are many more that I haven’t mentioned here. The critical thing to remember is that the most frequent cause of cataracts is the changes in the lens of the eye caused by aging. Because there are so many older people in Canada today than before there are a lot of people with cataracts that need treating.

Cataracts – Examination in Toronto

A cataract assessment starts with taking a history. We’ll ask you detailed questions and explore all optical errors and other diseases in your family. For example, we’ll want to know whether you or any of your family members suffer from diabetes, high blood pressure, allergies or similar problems. We’ll also want to know the names of all of the medications that you take. We will measure the glasses you are using and will test your reading skills with and without glasses.

We will measure your refractive errors. We will check your intraocular pressure. The measurement of the intraocular pressure is crucial at any age because a higher intraocular pressure can signal a higher risk of glaucoma.

Furthermore, we will conduct a biometric examination as part of your pre-operative examination. That involves measuring your eye. We’ll use the data from that measurement for the calculation of your new artificial intraocular eye lens.

After that, we’ll conduct a Pentacam examination. A Pentacam measures the anterior (front) segment of the eye. We also examine the posterior (back) segment of the eye after we dilate your eyes. We will administer eye drops into your eyes, which will widen your pupil. The eye drops are entirely painless.

After we widen your pupil with these painless drops, we will take a photograph of your retina (the very back of your eye). In this step of the examination, we will uncover any potential hidden bleeding or damage to the retina. We will also scan for a disease called AMD (the age-related macular degeneration of the retina).

You will end your examination with a consultation with an ophthalmologist, who will perform a detailed analysis of the back eye segment of the eye. This eye doctor will be the one with whom you will discuss and choose the best treatment option to remove your cataract.

Cataracts – Treatment details

Eye surgeons perform 15 million cataract treatments each year making them the the most common eye procedures worldwide. At Clearview Institute we offer our patients cataract surgery to restore good vision at a distance, or to treat both the cataract and presbyopia with a procedure we call Customised Multifocal Intraocular Lens Replacement.

Both approaches involve removing your natural crystalline lens and replacing it with a high-resolution lens called an intraocular lens (IOL) implant. Today’s IOLs, medical device manufacturers design lenses to closely mimic the performance of a young and healthy eye.

What causes cataracts?

Cataracts naturally occur with aging. Sometimes eye injury, prolonged steroid medication use, diabetes, genetics, or previous retinal surgery can cause cataracts to form faster.

What are cataracts?

A cataract is when the natural lens inside of the eye that helps with focusing becomes cloudy. This causes changes to vision. At first it may change your glasses prescription. As it progresses, it may cause fogginess, blurriness, glare, and decreased vision that glasses cannot correct

How can cataracts be treated?

Cataracts can be treated by cataract surgery. The natural lens that has become cloudy is removed and replaced with an artificial clear lens called an intraocular lens (IOL). The surgeon does this usually through a small incision which helps to reduce recovery time

Can cataracts be prevented?

Cataracts eventually occur for most people with age. Wearing sunglasses when outdoors during the day can help to reduce the amount of UV exposed to your eyes and can slow down the progression. If patients have diabetes, having stable blood sugars can slow progression

Dear Dr. Kranemann, Many thanks in the nice, smooth and trouble free cataract surgery you carried out on both my eyes at Clearview Institute. I would like also to extend my thanks to all the staff of clearview. They are efficient, kind hearted and very helpful.J.T.
Dr. Kranemann is exceptionally intelligent and experienced. He is passionate about achieving perfect results for his patients, and proved it by correcting my father’s vision perfectly. We are very happy and grateful and highly recommend Dr. Kranemann.B.A.
Had the new vision correction procedure SMILE. WOW is all I can say. Life without glasses is amazing. Great surgeon and medical staff. Will refer his expertise on to family and friends.D.C.
Canadian Ophthalmological Society
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