In order for the information from the outside world to come clearly to the retina, it is essential that the crystalline is involved , which is a lens that we have inside the eye and that makes us see well both from far and near. This process, which is performed automatically thousands of times throughout the day, suffers exhaustion from the age of 40 on a phenomenon known as presbyopia or tired sight .
Cataracts: why they occur and what types exist
When the lens is no longer transparent it is called a cataract. Cataracts can be congenital (fortunately very rare) or acquired. Although there are metabolic, immune, infectious diseases secondary to the ingestion of drugs (corticosteroids, chemotherapy, etc.) that can produce cataracts, most are included in the group of senile cataracts , that is, opacifications of the lens that appear above Of the 65 years and that they do not obey to any concrete cause and yes to a general aging of the individual. Therefore, we could say, without fear of exaggeration, that sooner or later the whole population suffers from this condition.
What can alert us to a cataract
In general, the onset of cataract is insidious and the patient is not aware of their problem because the vision decreases slowly but progressively. Often it is a fortuitous finding in the course of a routine review with the specialist in Ophthalmology. Sometimes the patient simply suffers a night glare or a "veil" sensation .
How to diagnose cataracts and what is the most appropriate treatment
The diagnosis of cataract is very simple for the ophthalmologist and, once established, the time of surgery (only possible treatment) should be assessed as a function of the visual deficit that originates the patient, although at the present time, and given the Low incidence of complications that this surgery produces, do not wait until the cataract is very advanced or the vision has decreased greatly.
Cataract surgery is the safest and most evolved surgical procedure in the field of Ophthalmology. It should be remembered that until the mid-1970s cataract surgery required hospitalization and absolute rest for a week and the patient had to be equipped with glasses of about 13 diopters. At present, cataract surgery is an ambulatory intervention that does not require rest and in which an intraocular lens is implanted that makes (or almost) unnecessary use of glasses. This is possible because there are different models of intraocular lenses that allow us to cover the different types of refractive defects and, depending on them and the visual needs of our patients, we implant one or the other model.
So, we currently have simple or toric monofocal lenses (for astigmatism) that are used for those people who do not want to wear glasses from a distance but do not mind wearing glasses for fence. On the other hand, we have multifocal lenses (with or without astigmatism) whose most important property is that the patient can see well from far, near and at intermediate distances.
With all of this the objective is to contribute to a better visual and life quality of our patients, by suppressing the dependence of glasses.