How is a Cataract Treated?
• Answer: The symptoms of early cataract may be improved with new eyeglasses, brighter lighting, anti-glare sunglasses, or magnifying lenses. If these measures do not help, surgery is the only effective treatment. Surgery involves removing the cloudy lens and replacing it with an artificial lens. A cataract needs to be removed only when vision loss interferes with your everyday activities, such as driving, reading, or watching TV . You and your eye care professional can make this decision together. Sometimes a cataract should be removed even if it does not cause problems with your vision. For example, a cataract should be removed if it prevents examination or treatment of another eye problem, such as age-related macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy. If you have cataracts in both eyes that require surgery, the surgery will be performed on each eye at separate times, usually four to eight weeks apart.
Surgery is the only way a cataract can be removed. However, if symptoms from a cataract are mild, a change of glasses may be all that is needed for you to function more comfortably. There are no medications, dietary supplements, exercises or optical devices that have been shown to prevent or cure cataracts. Protection from excessive sunlight may help prevent or slow the progression of cataracts. Sunglasses that screen out ultraviolet (UV) light rays or regular eyeglasses with a clear, anti-UV coating offer this protection.