How to treat a cataract

Written by: Dr. Vicente Ortuño Prados
Edited by: Top Doctors®

Cataract is any congenital or acquired opacity in the capsule or lens content of the eye. There are types such as nuclear, cortical, subcapsular posterior and subcapsular anterior.

According to specialists in Ophthalmology, the main symptoms of cataracts are loss of vision, decreased sensitivity to contrast in bright light, increased diopter crystalline power producing myopia, double vision or even phantom images.

Diagnosis of cataract

In order to detect if a patient has cataracts, he / she must go to the ophthalmologist. The specialist, through a close examination with the slit lamp, will observe the opacification of the lens, which is the natural lens of the eye, and which until now was transparent. This opacification is what causes the vision to gradually decrease. Apart from this we must rule out any other disease in the eye that causes decreased vision, such as high pressure or diseases of the cornea or retina.

Treatment of cataract

Patients indicated to undergo surgery to treat cataract are those with AV <0.7 with optical correction, people with decreased visual acuity that makes it difficult for them to perform their daily and / or labor activities and patients who want to improve their vision.

Intraocular lenses

Once the diagnosis, indication and calculation of the lens has been made, the type of intraocular lens that is most convenient for the patient is chosen. There are several types:

- Monofocal lenses correct myopia and hyperopia. The toric corrects astigmatism.

- Multifocal lenses distribute light in such a way that they allow vision from both far and near. They are precise if previously the patient's case is well studied, the intermediate vision is not totally satisfactory, except in the case of trifocal lenses. Halos and glare may appear, and the toric corrects the astigmatism in this case.

Surgery for cataract

The surgery is performed by the technique of the Phacoemulsification. Only anesthesia is used in the eye, and is a technique that is performed by a small incision, without the need to give points in most cases and with a very fast recovery.

Targets for cataract surgery

Each patient receives a treatment according to their needs, type of life, etc.. The main goals to be achieved with surgery are the reduction of visual symptoms, improvement of visual function, achievement of a desired refractive state and improvement of quality of life.


Today, cataract surgery should seek to minimize surgical invasion, improve and reduce rehabilitation time, maximize the patient's visual ability and restore the ability to see simultaneously from far and near by different types of lenses.

The specialist, before indicating surgery as a method of treatment, should evaluate the patient's social history in terms of age, profession, lifestyle, and the patient's desire and expectations to improve his visual acuity.

Whenever possible, the best treatment is surgery by conventional technique or by MICS technique, to reduce possible intraoperative complications and achieve a faster visual recovery. The ultimate goal of cataract surgery is to achieve an emmetropia or visual acuity that meets the patient's visual expectations, regardless of the technique and type of lens that is planned to use.

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

By Dr. Vicente Ortuño Prados

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

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