June is Cataract Awareness Month

Did you know that approximately 24 million Americans age 40 or older are affected by cataracts? This number is expected to double by 2050. This is why restoring vision to people is one of the reasons why we do what we do.

A cataract results when there is a clouding of the eye’s natural lens, which is located behind the iris and the pupil. Lenses are composed of water and protein and a cataract forms when the proteins clump together. Once you have a cataract, images typically appear increasingly cloudy, distorted, or blurry over time.

To date, no medication or eye drop has been proven to prevent or reverse cataract formation. If a cataract is causing nearsightedness or a change in an individual’s prescription, new prescription eyeglasses can help improve blurred vision, but the only treatment for a cataract is surgical removal of the natural lens. More than 3 million Americans undergo cataract surgery annually, making it one of the most common surgeries in the U.S.

AMSURG is working to restore vision to people with cataracts. More than 150,000 cataract surgeries are completed annually at 75 AMSURG centers and more than 600 ophthalmologists choose to perform surgeries at AMSURG centers.

Cataracts and Your Family

Cataracts do not only affect seniors: more than 4 million Americans age 60 and under have cataracts. The following symptoms may mean it is time to consider surgery:

  • When blurred vision makes it difficult to read print or read signs while driving
  • Disabling glare while driving at night; or difficulty engaging in hobbies such as knitting, crocheting, or card games
  • In short, if a cataract and resultant blurred vision make it difficult to conduct normal activities, it is time to consider cataract surgery
  • A cataract should be removed if it prevents examination or treatment of another eye problem, such as age-related macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy

With the new intraocular lenses (IOLs) available today, many people enjoy their best vision ever. Many patients frequently comment after surgery that they wish they had done it sooner.

Check out YourSightMatters.com to learn more.