Understanding Cataracts

A cataract is a vision problem caused by a clouding of the eye’s lens. The most common type is related to aging. More than half of the American population ages 60 and older has cataracts.

What is the lens?

The lens is the part of the eye that helps focus light on the retina. In a normal eye, light passes through the lens and is focused on the retina. To produce a clear image, the lens must remain clear. The lens is a transparent structure made of an ordered array of lens fibers that contain proteins and water. With age, the protein can clump together and start to cloud small areas of the lens which then causes a loss of transparency, interfering with vision. This is called a cataract. In its early stages, a cataract may not cause a problem. However, over time the cataract may grow larger, making it harder to see. Because less light reaches the retina, your vision may become dull and blurry.

Cataract Symptoms

Cloudy or blurred vision
Nighttime glare from headlights
Sensitivity to light
Difficulty reading fine print
Faded colors

Cataract Surgery

Cataract surgery is one of the most commonly performed procedures in the United States.  It is an outpatient procedure which normally takes about 15 minutes to perform.

At Helm Vision Group, state-of-the-art cataract removal is performed through a procedure called phacoemulsification.  In this procedure, ultrasound waves are used to dissolve the cataract which is then removed with suction. Once the cataract is removed, a new artificial lens implant is inserted. It is not uncommon for our patients to have the benefit of dramatically improved vision within a few hours of their procedure. Anesthetic eye drops are used along with mild intravenous sedation, making the procedure painless and allowing our patients the fastest possible recovery.

After surgery with traditional monofocal lenses, most patients experience very good vision at one distance, either up close or far away. In most cases, the monofocal lens provides good distance vision for driving, walking and some everyday activities. However, most people with monofocal lenses still require reading glasses or bifocals to have a full range of vision.
At Helm Vision Group we are proud to offer our patients the ReSTOR® multifocal intraocular lens which is designed to reduce or eliminate your dependence on reading glasses, bifocals or trifocals. We have over 12 years of experience with the implantation of this lens and have over a thousand satisfied patients.  We have performed over 10,000 cataract procedures.

The ReSTOR Multifocal Lens Implant

For those patients with cataracts or presbyopia wanting to reduce or even eliminate their dependence from glasses, we offer the Acrysof ReSTOR lens implant. This procedure is performed the same safe way we remove cataracts.

The ReSTOR multifocal lens implant is designed to improve vision at all distances. The standard monofocal lens implant focuses light at one distance only.  Since everyone’s needs are different, a personal consultation with one of our doctors will help determine if the ReSTOR multifocal lens implant is right for you.

The aspheric ReSTOR lens combines the strength of diffractive and refractive technologies to provide quality distance, near and intermediate. In a clinical trial, four out of five ReSTOR patients reported never wearing glasses following their procedure.

Cataract Frequently Asked Questions

What exactly is a cataract?

A cataract is a clouding of the eye’s natural lens, which lies behind the pupil of the eye. A normal lens is clear. It lets light pass to the retina, the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye. As a cataract develops, it becomes harder for a person to see. Vision may become cloudy or blurry, and colors may fade.
When cataracts develop they usually occur in both eyes. One eye may be worse than the other, however, because each cataract develops at a different rate. Some people with a cataract don’t even know it. Their cataract may be small, or the changes in their vision may not bother them very much. Other people cannot see well enough to do the things they need or want to do.

Can cataracts be prevented?

Most people develop cataracts with age. However, a good, balanced diet, protection from the sun, and restraint from smoking can delay the development of cataracts.

Will I need to wear glasses after my cataract surgery?

During traditional cataract surgery a single focus lens is implanted. Often this gives patients good distance vision but still requires them to wear reading glasses for near vision. However, at Helm Vision Group, patients have the option to use the ReSTOR® lens implant which allows good distance and reading vision.

What are possible side effects of cataract surgery?

As with any surgery, discomfort, infection and swelling are possible, but very few patients experience serious problems. Your surgeon may prescribe medications for these effects. Retinal detachment is also rare. However, if you experience excessive pain or vision loss, report these symptoms to your surgeon immediately.

Who Is Affected?

Most cataracts are related to aging. At least half of Americans ages 65 to 74 have a cataract. About 70 percent of those age 75 and older have this condition. However, other conditions can increase the risk of developing cataracts. Examples include diabetes, smoking and alcohol use, and prolonged exposure to sunlight.

How Is a Cataract Treated?

Surgery is used to remove a cataract when vision loss interferes with everyday activities such as driving, reading, or watching TV. If you have cataracts in both eyes, the surgery will be performed on each eye at separate times, usually 2 weeks apart.

If You Have Any Questions Call Us At +1-661-259-3937