Cataracts - Topic Overview
What is a cataract? A cataract is a painless, cloudy area in the lens of the eye that blocks the passage of light to the retina.
The lens of the eye is enclosed in a lining called the lens capsule. Extracapsular surgery, also called extracapsular cataract extraction (ECCE), involves removing the lens with the cataract from the lens capsule.
Cataracts - Home Treatment
If you have cataracts, these tips and vision aids may help you manage your vision problems and avoid or delay surgery: Tips for improving vision include repositioning lights or, if you wear them, updating the prescription for your eyeglasses or contact le
Cataracts and Ultraviolet Light - Topic Overview
Ultraviolet (UV) radiation, such as sunlight, is absorbed by the lens of the eye and can lead to the formation of chemicals called free radicals inside the lens. Over time, free radicals may damage the lens, causing cataracts.People exposed to excessive amounts of sunlight because of their profession (such as agricultural workers), geographic area (such as sunny parts of the country), or use of tanning booths or sunlamps may be more likely to form cataracts.It is not known for sure whether reducing UV exposure helps prevent cataracts.
Cataracts - Symptoms
Not all cataracts impair vision or affect daily living. For those that do, common symptoms include: cloudy, fuzzy, foggy, or filmy vision, glare from lamps or the sun, difficulty driving at night due to glare from headlights.
Cataracts - When To Call a Doctor
If you have cataracts, call your doctor immediately if you have severe eye pain or a sudden change in your vision.
Cataracts - Exams and Tests
Diagnosis of cataracts is based on a medical history and physical examination. Often tests are used to: Confirm the presence of a cataract. Rule out other conditions that may be causing vision loss. For more information, see the topics Vision Tests, Ophth
Cataracts - What Increases Your Risk
Risk factors for cataracts include age, ethnicity, sex, and others.