The risk of falling increases with age for just about everyone. But with the poor vision that a cataract brings, that risk increases dramatically.
A study of more than 400 Vietnamese people aged 50 or more with cataracts in both eyes looked at how many falls each person had before and after undergoing cataract surgery.
In the year after surgery on one eye, the risk of a fall decreased by 78 percent.
The results suggest that waiting for a cataract to worsen before having it removed increases the possibility of a fall, so it may be wiser not to wait.
The study was presented May 2014 at the annual meeting of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology.
You may not notice any symptoms with early cataracts. As a cataract becomes more advanced, decrease in clarity of vision, not fully correctable with glasses, is noticed. There is a loss of contrast sensitivity, so that shadows and color vision are less vivid. Disturbing glare may be noted as light into the eye is scattered by the cataract. Halos may be observed around lights. Night vision will be diminished. In certain types of cataracts, double vision may be noted in the affected eye. Some patients note that they require frequent changes in their eyeglass or contact lens prescriptions and may be aware that their near vision is improving as their distance vision declines.
A cataract does not routinely cause discomfort or pain in the eye or alter the external appearance of the eye.
The only way to determine if your vision problem results from a cataract is to visit an eye care professional for a complete examination. At Pepose Vision Institute, we use state-of-the-art diagnostics to evaluate your eyes. Our wavefront diagnostic technology generates thousands of data points about your eyes in a matter of minutes. We are the only cataract surgeons in the Bi-State area to provide this level of thoroughness during your exam.
To learn more about cataracts and how we can help you, please visit the Cataract page on our website.
If you think you might have cataracts, or haven’t seen us for an exam in more than a year, please come see us soon.