Can Cataracts be Reversed?

Portrait of serene mature woman in gardenIt is estimated that one-quarter of the population will have cataracts by age 65. The older we get, the greater our chances of cataracts. Patients often want to know if they can reverse cataracts if they act quickly when they notice the symptoms of this condition. The answer is no. Cataracts are not reversible. That said, they can be treated and should be at whatever point feels most comfortable for the patient. A quick, safe, and effective laser procedure can restore clear vision, so why wait? Here, we discuss what you may want to know about cataracts and how to protect your eyes.

How Cataracts Form

Cataracts are slow-growing accumulations of protein in the lens of the eye. The condition is painless and gradual, so many people miss the early signs that their eyes are changing. Because of the speed at which cataracts take over the lens, patients often manage their eyesight very well with prescription eyeglasses. Surgery is not necessary during the early stages of disease. It is when vision becomes so cloudy that a person has difficulty seeing screens, reading, or observing faces that treatment is necessary.

Cataract removal surgery is not new. In fact, the first cataract procedure was performed more than 250 years ago! At that time, the success rate of treatment was only 50 percent. We’ve come a long, long way in improving the safety and efficacy of cataract removal. According to statistics, this procedure has a 99 percent success rate. Patients typically recover quickly from the outpatient surgery that takes less than 20 minutes to perform. Vision is significantly improved about one-week post-surgery, and patients have options for replacement lenses that can simultaneously correct other vision problems, such as astigmatism.

The procedure to remove clouded lenses used to be primarily performed manually using tiny instruments. As we’ve experienced advances in technology, ophthalmologists have shifted toward the use of laser instruments to perform cataract removal. Laser technology has improved the precision and consistency of the minor procedure and, as a result, patient outcomes have gotten better. At Roholt Vision Institute, our providers spend a great deal of time educating patients about their options so they can feel confident about their treatment decisions.

How Can I Care for My Eyes with Cataracts?

Because cataracts grow slowly, often over several years, patients may want to know what they can do to best care for their eyes. While there is no data that proves preventative measures can slow or halt the progression of cataracts, the following are generally good habits to promote eye health. If you are noticing the signs of cataracts, you may benefit from:

  • Avoiding or limiting alcohol and tobacco
  • Including plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables into meals
  • Wearing sunglasses every day to prevent unnecessary UV exposure

In addition to these steps, you can benefit from seeing your ophthalmologist for regular eye exams. At Roholt Vision Institute, patients can receive comprehensive care that includes exams that observe all parts of the eyes. To schedule your visit with us in North Canton, Alliance, or Canfield, contact us here.

Posted in: Cataract Surgery

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