The loss of transparency of the lens in the eye and its thickening and becoming clouded or opaque is called cataract. Although it can be seen at any age starting from birth, the most common cause is aging in the lens. Although in most cases, cataracts are associated with people aged 60 and above, it can also be observed in the newborns without any reason, or because of any infection, diabetes, other diseases or the mother's infection during pregnancy. For example, it should be remembered that cataract, known as age-related, can also be seen in newborn babies. For this reason, it is essential to have an eye examination for babies as soon as they are born.
Cataracts can sometimes be seen in all age groups, especially in conditions such as diabetes, cortisone use, trauma.
Signs and symptoms of cataracts include:
- Vision loss,
- Light sensitivity,
- Double vision,
- Fading of colors
- Seeing "halos" around lights
- Frequent changes in eyeglass or contact lens prescription
- Loss of night-vision
- Limited depth perception
The only treatment of cataract, the most important symptom of which is decreased vision, is surgery, there is no drug treatment. The main purpose of surgery is to improve vision and quality of life. Therefore, the timing of cataract surgery is directly related to the patient's vision and quality of life.
What are Cataract Surgery Methods ?
Phacoemulsification(Phaco Method)): In the Phaco Method; The damaged lens is removed with ultrasonic energy and an artificial lens is inserted. With the modern technology used in cataract surgery today, the chance of recovery is very fast and the risk of complications is almost non-existent. With the operation lasting about 10 minutes, the patients go through the process comfortably.They return to their homes immediately after the operation and to their daily lives from the next day.
Artificial intraocular lenses (IOL) used in cataract surgery are the most important factors that determine the quality of vision after surgery. The patient's age, occupation, and expectations (such as whether to use glasses or not) are important factors in the selection of lenses.
The advantages of phaco laser cataract surgery, which reduces the complication rate and is performed with micron precision under computer control:
- Corneal phaco incisions can be made properly without the use of a knife.
- A very smooth and centralized window is opened in the anterior capsule of the natural lens. Therefore, the lens inserted into the eye is better centralized in the short and long term.
- Since the cataract is disintegrated with the femto laser, less energy is used in the eye, less inflammation and edema occur.
- Astigmatism can be reduced and corrected by laser intervention on the cornea.
Intraocular Lenses in Cataract Surgery
During cataract surgery, artificial lenses are placed in all patients with rare exceptions. Which type of intraocular lens will be used in your surgery should be decided together with your doctor before the surgery. The physician will recommend the most suitable lens for the patients.
What are the lens types used in cataract surgery ?
Single Focal Lenses: Depending on your eye and lifestyle, it can be either far or near focused. If the lens is focused far, you may need to use glasses for astigmatism and nearsightedness.
Toric (Astigmatic) Single Focal Lenses: Astigmatism is corrected with this lens, which corrects your astigmatism. You may need to use glasses for nearsightedness.
Multifocal and Trifocal (Smart) Lenses: With multifocal lenses, your far and near vision is corrected. Trifocal lenses, also known as 'smart' lenses among the people, correct far-middle-close distances to achieve an almost uninterrupted vision without glasses.
Toric (Astigmatic) Multifocal and Trifocal Lenses: These are lenses that correct both astigmatism and long-middle-nearsightedness.
What are the side effects of cataract surgery?
In the early stage recovery ;
- slight burning,
- watering may occur,
- pain is not expected
- Vision starts in quality within 1-2 days and reaches the desired level in 10-15 days.
What are the post-operative instructions ?
- Apply the prescribed eye drops as instructed and always after washing your hands.
- In the first week, be careful not to rub your eyes or lift heavy objects.
- While washing the hair, the foamy dirty water flowing should not contact the eyes.
- If you have complaints such as pain and burning, consult your doctor.
Does cataract grow back?
Cataract does not happen again after surgery. Since the problematic lens is removed and a new lens is put in its place, cataract will not develop in the new lens.
Is it possible to prevent cataract ?
It is not possible to completely prevent cataract formation. However, there are some recommendations to reduce the risk of contracting the disease
- Quit smoking,
- Keeping diabetes under control,
- Protecting the eyes from sunlight and not looking directly at the sun,
- Healthy and balanced diet,
- To have regular health checks and not to delay the follow-up in the presence of chronic disease.