Cataract - adult

Lens opacity; Age-related cataract

A cataract is a clouding of the lens of the eye.

Eye

The eye is the organ of sight, a nearly spherical hollow globe filled with fluids (humors). The outer layer or tunic (sclera, or white, and cornea) is fibrous and protective. The middle tunic layer (choroid, ciliary body and the iris) is vascular. The innermost layer (the retina) is nervous or sensory. The fluids in the eye are divided by the lens into the vitreous humor (behind the lens) and the aqueous humor (in front of the lens). The lens itself is flexible and suspended by ligaments which allow it to change shape to focus light on the retina, which is composed of sensory neurons.

Slit-lamp exam

A slit-lamp, which is a specialized magnifying microscope, is used to examine the structures of the eye (including the cornea, iris, vitreous, and retina). The slit-lamp is used to examine, treat (with a laser), and photograph (with a camera) the eye.

Cataract - close-up of the eye

This photograph shows a cloudy white lens (cataract) over the pupil. Cataracts are a leading cause of decreased vision in older adults, but children may have congenital cataracts. With surgery, the cataract can be removed, a new lens implanted, and the person can usually return home the same day.

Cataract surgery - series

The lens of an eye is normally clear. A cataract is when the lens becomes cloudy as you get older.

Causes

Symptoms

Exams and Tests

Treatment

Outlook (Prognosis)

Possible Complications

When to Contact a Medical Professional

Prevention