Cataracts are caused when the proteins in the eye’s lens break down and clump together. Cataracts develop as a normal part of the aging process. In the early stages, cataracts don’t cause any visible symptoms. One may notice blurred vision and other visual disturbances as the eye condition progresses. In fact, one of the FAQs on cataracts is how quickly do cataracts progress? Over here let’s look at the answer:
Question 1 : How quickly do cataracts progress?
During the early stages, cataracts may have very little effect on your eyesight. Although cataracts progress in stages, the development of the eye condition depends on various factors such as age, diabetes, prolonged exposure to UV rays, excessive alcohol consumption, and smoking. To understand how quickly the eye condition progresses, you need to gain an idea about the various stages of cataract.
- Early cataract: In this stage, the lens refracts light irregularly – as part of the lens is cloudy and the other part is transparent. The signs and symptoms may include:
- mildly blurred or cloudy vision
- increased light sensitivity
- double vision
- halos around light
- poor night vision
- frequent changes to the prescription glasses or contact lenses
- Immature cataract: In this stage, proteins start to cloud the eye lens, especially in the center. The progression from the early stage to this stage may take some time, however, lack of treatment can worsen the condition.
- Mature cataract: In this stage, the eye lens becomes deep amber or completely white. Cataracts start spreading to the edges and impact the vision severely. The symptoms are almost the same as in the early stage, however, they are more severe and affect day-to-day life.
- Hypermature cataract: The last and advanced stage, where cataracts become very dense, impairing vision to a large extent. It can lead to increased pressure and inflammation in the eyes, resulting in glaucoma.
When a cataract interferes with your day-to-day activities, such as reading, cooking, and driving, then surgery might be necessary. Cataract surgery is one of the most preferred and safest procedures to remove cataracts. The next commonly asked question about cataract surgery to our eye specialists in Kolkata is how long does cataract surgery take for one eye? Over here let’s look at the answer:
Question 2: How long does cataract surgery take for one eye?
Cataract surgery is usually performed on one eye at a time. After the first surgery is done, the eye doctor waits for a few weeks to perform the second one. The time delay allows recovery of the first surgery and vision stabilization. The surgery usually takes 15-20 minutes, but post-operative treatment can take up to an hour or even more than that. The procedure is painless and is carried out under general anesthesia.
Question 3: How many days rest is required after cataract surgery?
Many people can resume normal activities 1 to 3 days after the surgery. Here are some useful insights regarding post-operative care and recovery:
- Post-operative visits to the doctor:
Although cataract surgery is performed as an outpatient procedure, you will have to take proper care of your eyes after the surgery. Post-operative care includes follow-up medical care or procedures, medications, and routine check-up to check for complications that may arise after the surgery. A routine check-up helps curb the risks or complications associated with cataract surgery.
- Post-surgery care:
Like any other surgery, it is important to take certain precautions after the surgery. Wear an eye shield or patch as recommended by your eye doctor. Although you can resume your daily activities after the day of surgery, avoid strenuous physical activities or driving immediately after the surgery. Do not splash water into the operated eye and avoid a head bath. Also, avoid using cosmetics such as eyeliners, mascara, and kohl. Follow your eye doctor or eye specialist’s instructions along with proper medical care and routine check-up.
- Days required for recovery:
You can resume your daily routine within 24 hours of surgery. However, it can take a few days to get completely accustomed to the situation and achieve the desired vision. Patients, in some cases, can experience halos around light or a crescent-shaped shadow, which will cure with time.
- Possible side effects:
Cataract surgery is safe and has a high rate of success with very low chances of side effects. However, just like any other surgery, patients may experience some possible side effects like infection, bleeding, pain, and swelling if proper care is not taken. In rare cases, they experience severe complications. Follow your eye surgeon’s directions closely to reduce the likelihood of complications after cataract surgery, and report any complications right away.