A cataract is the normal clouding of the natural lens of the eye. This is a normal part of the aging process. Uncommonly it is also seen in young age in certain people (diabetics) and in certain situations (trauma or congenital cataracts). The normal function of the natural lens is to focus the image of what we are looking at precisely on the retina. With clouding not only the clarity but color, contrast sensitivity and the lens’ natural flexibility decrease. The end result, in extreme cases, is blindness. But this is easily corrected by surgery when the opaque lens is removed by a method called phacoemulcification and replaced by an Intra Ocular Lens (IOL).
With the advancements in technology, the variety of IOLs available are vast with ones available for almost every eye variation. Most cataract surgeries can now be performed under topical anaesthesia, that is, without any injections and bandage, by the use of local anesthetic eye drops. In most cases, before the patient even knows it, the surgery is done and they walk out of the operation theatre seeing with new clarity and brightness.