A cataract is a clouding of the eye’s lens. When we look at something, light rays travel into our eye through the pupil and are focused through the lens onto the retina, a layer of light-sensitive cells at the back of the eye. The lens must be clear in order to focus light properly onto the retina. If the lens has become cloudy, this is called a cataract.
While cataracts are one of the most common causes of vision loss, especially as we age, they are treatable with cataract surgery. Since most cataracts are part of the normal aging process, they cannot be reversed. There are no medications or eye drops that will make cataracts go away—surgery is the only treatment.
When a cataract causes bothersome vision problems that interfere with your daily activities, Dr. Hwang may recommend surgery to remove the cataract. With cataract surgery, your eye’s cloudy natural lens is removed and replaced with a clear artificial lens implant called an intraocular lens (or IOL).
You and the doctor can discuss the cataract surgery procedure, preparation for and recovery after surgery, benefits and possible complications of cataract surgery, and other important information. Together, you can decide if cataract surgery is appropriate for you.