News » Cataracts: types and symptoms of the most common disorder that affects the crystalline
A cataract is a very common disorder, especially among those over 70, consisting of the opacification of the lens. The lens inside the eye located between the iris and the vitreous body.
This process is due to changes in the chemical composition, in particular to oxidation of its proteins, which then reduce its transparency.
Aging, eye diseases, systemic diseases such as diabetes, ocular trauma, congenital or hereditary defects, are certainly the main reasons for these changes. Other reasons are related to lifestyle: it is always advisable to follow a healthy diet and engage in regular physical activity.
In senile cataract, the most common type, hardening and opacification of the lens representing the effect of a completely normal aging process. Even though children may complain of ailments related to this disease, often passed from parents or inflicted by inflammatory or infectious states that go to occur during pregnancy, such as rubella.
This type of cataract, which affects the unborn child, is called congenital cataracts.
The ocular trauma, instead, may be due to traumatic cataract. Some medications such as steroids can promote the opacification of the lens.
It then defines secondary cataract opacification of the posterior lens capsule.
In Italy the cataract affects about 8.5% of the population between 70 and 74 years, and this percentage increases to 17% of those who exceed 80 years.
Symptoms related to cataract
Among the symptoms reported by the vast majority of those who suffer from this disease include: double or blurred vision, perception of less vivid colors, frequent change of prescription glasses, sensitivity to light and glare. The pupil, for the hardening effect of the typical crystalline nucleus of the cataract, tends to appear yellowish or even white.
The effectiveness of drugs such as eye drops or tablets to date, unfortunately, is not clearly established.
It follows that, when the visual impairment caused is no longer tolerable by the patient, the only treatment is represented by the removal surgery. The appropriate time for intervention is evaluated by their doctor decides with the patient.
The surgical technique of phacoemulsification
The intervention consists generally in a technique called phacoemulsification, consisting in crushing of the crystalline lens via the effective ultrasonic emission, which then follow the extraction of the crystalline fragments and insertion of a small artificial lens (IOL). The operation is performed under local or topical anesthesia and recovery after surgery is particularly fast.
The risk of post-operative astigmatism is significantly reduced.
Cataract is the most common surgery in the world. Modern techniques have significantly reduced the risks intraoperative (about 0.01%) related to the intervention.
Significant importance are the measures to be taken after the operation.
We must avoid rubbing the eye and to sleep on the same side of the eye operated.
You have to instill eye drops prescribed by your doctor, use sunglasses because of sensitivity to light and avoid excessive physical exertion (like lifting weights).
And \'necessary for the patient, because of the risk of infection in the two weeks following the established undergoes medical checks.
The current state of knowledge cannot confirm with certainty that cataracts can be prevented. However, it can be said that smoking, lack of exercise, exposure to the sun without the protection of state of the art sunglasses and a poor diet are important risk factors that you definitely tend to anticipate what could, of course , also have in each case the place, but perhaps at a more advanced age.
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