What are Cataracts?

Home | Cataracts | What are Cataracts?

cataracts-300x216It’s not yet understood what exactly causes cataracts. Scientists do know that other risk factors for cataracts are diabetes, steroid intake, smoking, and exposure to the sun’s UV rays (particularly in places near the equator, such as Hawaii).

A cataract is a clouding up of the clear lens of the eye or the surrounding membrane. The cloudiness keeps light from entering the eye properly, reducing vision.

The symptoms of a cataract can be:

A cataract can be classified by its location in the eye, or by its size and shape, or by the point in time when it developed. Dr. Alan Faulkner can tell you more about the particular details of your cataracts.

What Can Be Done For My Cataracts?

When you and your doctor have made the decision to restore your vision with cataract surgery, there are a number of options to consider when planning your treatment strategy. Advancements in surgical, refractive, and intraocular lens technology have allowed for more customized treatment than ever before. Options available at Aloha Laser Vision for the treatment of cataracts include:

Traditional Cataract Surgery

Traditional cataract surgery is one of the most common and routinely performed vision correction procedures at Aloha Laser Vision. Standard cataract surgery involves removal of the clouded lens using precise surgical instrumentation and ultrasonic technology. Once your surgeon is able to remove the cataract completely, an intraocular lens (IOL) is implanted in place of the old lens. The type of IOL placed will depend upon your unique vision correction needs, lifestyle and the recommendation of your surgeon.

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Laser Cataract Surgery

Cataract surgery performed with all-laser technology provides for enhanced customization, efficiency, and precision of the procedure. During laser cataract surgery, your surgeon utilizes state of the art laser technology that is custom-programmed to perform the procedure in a way that suits the unique characteristics of your eyes. There are no blades or manual instrumentation used to accomplish cataract removal – incisions to remove the cataract are made using the LenSx® Femtosecond Laser. In addition to making precise incisions, the LenSx® uses laser energy to safely dissolve the cataract for smooth and complete removal from the eye.

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IOLs

iol-300x132Whether you undergo traditional cataract surgery or laser cataract surgery, an intraocular lens (IOL) will likely be used to replace the cataractous natural lens removed during surgery. Great improvements have been made to IOL technology over the decades since its inception. The early IOLs were monofocal – that is, they provided good distance vision, but reading glasses or bifocals were still needed for seeing up close and sometimes at intermediate range. Nowadays, IOLs that are multifocal and accommodative can decrease a cataract patient’s post-surgery dependence on reading glasses and bifocals by providing a fuller range of vision.

Advanced technology IOLs such as the AcrySof® ReSTOR® IOL and Tecnis® IOL are examples of the state-of-the-art options available at Aloha Laser Vision. These IOLs enable patients to see near, far, and in-between without heavy reliance on extra visual aid. In fact, these intraocular lenses may actually restore your vision to what it was like when you were younger.

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To schedule a consultation, examination, or to find out more about cataract surgery, please contact Aloha Laser Vision of Honolulu, Hawaii today.

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