Cataracts2020-01-31T18:24:46+00:00

What you need to know about cataracts

Learn more about cataracts and your treatment options
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What is a cataract?

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We do our best to understand your needs and aims so we can offer you the best vision correction options

YOU’VE NOTICED THAT YOUR CHILD HAS AN EXISTING OR EMERGING EYE CONDITION

It’s worrying, because you know that good vision is essential for them to not fall behind, both developmentally and socially. So, you’re looking for a child-friendly and affordable eye doctor who can help give your child the best opportunity to live a visually able life.

YOU’VE WORN GLASSES OR CONTACTS FOR MANY YEARS

They get in the way of your lifestyle and are burning a hole in your finances. You feel frustrated and inconvenienced by them and you’d very much like to be rid of them. Importantly, you don’t want to subject the safety of your eyes to a cheap deal and you don’t want to pay more than what’s fair.

LITTLE BY LITTLE, YOUR NEAR VISION IS GETTING WORSE

You own multiple pairs of reading glasses or varifocals. While they’re a fact of ageing, you don’t feel like you should need them yet. You’d really like to get rid of them but you’re nowhere near ready for cataract surgery. If only there was a procedure as safe and effective as LASIK, but for someone like you…

AGEING EYES ARE SPOILING YOUR FUN

Your sight is deteriorating, and the daily routine is becoming a bit of a struggle.

You want to be active and independent, but cumbersome glasses keep letting you down.

Wouldn’t it be amazing to have your natural vision restored and to regain that freedom?

What do patients with cataracts experience?

The answer is simple – they feel limited and not in charge of their life

Your vision has become blurred and cloudy

A cataract is the clouding of your eyes natural lens. The lens is just behind the pupil of your eye, and it helps to make a clear image on your retina. Usually, this lens is crystal clear.

As a cataract develops, the lens becomes increasingly milky, causing a greenish cloudiness. It can cause a glare in bright lights and change in the focus of the eyes. Eventually, the sight does not improve with a change of glasses.

The only way to treat a cataract is with surgery.

Cataracts can affect your mood

Cataracts develop slowly. Your vision deteriorates, and colours begin to fade.

This creeping change can make it feel as though your life is shrinking. As your daily routine becomes more challenging, it is not uncommon to feel frustrated and down.

You feel vulnerable

Your vision is critical in keeping you safe. As it deteriorates, glare from oncoming headlights and street lights can make you feel unsafe driving at night.

It is also more common to fall and injure yourself with cataracts.

As your eyesight decreases, your dependency increases

It can be embarrassing when you start to lose your independence. You don’t want to burden family and friends, but you find yourself relying on them more and more.

Life is for living

After cataract surgery, your natural vision is restored. Your independence and freedom comes flooding back and you can do the things you love without having to reach for your glasses or lenses first.

Here’s what Londoners say after eye treatment

We are proud to hear we make a meaningful difference to your life

Mr Bolger suggested having cataract surgery on both eyes on the same day and whilst I had concerns, I decided to go ahead. The day after I was able to remove the eye pads and I had perfect vision. I have told many people that it was the best thing I have ever spent my money on. I have needed spectacles or contact lenses since I was 9 years old and now have 20/20 vision with no assistance from spectacles. I would highly recommend the My-iClinic.

Mrs Penelope Carrozza

Double cataract removal in September 2018. The total experience from initial consultation to operation was most efficient. The result so far has been exactly as described in the brochure, I’ve never seen so well. I had glasses from just over 1 year old till now, (80+), what a difference!

Michael Turvey

Just discharged after having monovision cataract surgery in both eyes I am delighted with the outcome. I can see both near and far and have been able to dispense with my contact lenses and glasses. I have been well looked after from my first contact. Mr Bolger was very professional and reassuring and I felt at all times that I was in good hands. I cannot fault the whole experience including the charges, which having researched various alternatives, proved to be very reasonable.

Anne Collins

I had high confidence in the team working at My-iClinic due to their attentive and thorough end-to-end service, from the reception desk to the operation theatre. I have recommended the practice already to multiple friends, family members and colleagues. (And my eyesight is better than I even hoped for!)

Ames Ward

Absolutely fantastic. I was very nervous having my laser treatment for narrow angle glaucoma. The Consultant was wonderful, caring and very understanding. She talked me through the procedure and was extremely patient. Definitely recommend My-iClinic.

Maeve

Cataracts explained

In these toggles we explain what you need to know about cataracts

A cataract is the clouding of your natural eye lens.

The natural lens is just behind the pupil of your eye, and it helps to make a clear image on your retina. Usually, this lens is crystal clear.

Cataracts usually start to develop in a person’s lens as they age.

As a cataract develops, the lens becomes increasingly milky, causing a greenish cloudiness. It may also cause a glare in bright lights and change in the focus of the eyes, needing a frequent replacement of your glasses. Eventually, the sight does not improve with a change of glasses.

As cataracts develop slowly, many people are not aware of this creeping change. They only appreciate how poor their vision had been after the restoration of vision with cataract surgery.

To determine whether you have a cataract, we will review your medical history and symptoms, and perform an eye examination.

We will also perform the following tests:

  • Visual acuity test
  • Slit-lamp examination
  • Retinal exam

When the vision deteriorates, it is better to have the cloudy lens removed by an operation and replaced by a clear, artificial lens. This lens is called an implant.

At My-iClinic, we remove cataracts using the latest technology through the smallest incision. We then choose the best-matched lens for your eye to bring your sight into your desired focus.

Measuring the eye for surgery will take place at your outpatient visit before surgery. This is called BIOMETRY.

All you have to do is to stare at a target, and the machine does the rest. There is no pain or discomfort, and it takes just seconds. Maps of the surface of the eye are drawn, and the thickness of the cornea is measured. The tissue on the back of the cornea is examined and recorded.

Contact lenses can cause these measurements to be inaccurate and lead to incorrect results. Therefore, if you are a contact lens wearer, you should not wear them for approximately one month before the measurements are taken, as it can take this long for the cornea to come back to normal.

If you have had LASIK surgery or any refractive procedure to your eye, we cannot measure you in this way. Your replacement lens will be calculated by a different method.

Once the measurements are taken, the computer will calculate the strength of the replacement lens that will put your eye in focus after the operation. None of the measurements taken are painful or dangerous, and your eye will feel normal afterwards.

At the same appointment, you will be seen by a clinic nurse or secretary, and your details will be taken. You will have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have, and any problems or worries can be fully discussed.

It is best to attend the assessment clinic with the person who is going to be helping you after your operation.

Which of these best describes you?

“I can only see clearly when I wear my glasses or contact lenses”

“I find that I have to use my reading glasses more and more”

“I can’t see as well as I used to, I think there may be a problem…”

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Articles and videos to help you understand your eyes better

Learn more about the conditions we treat
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Compare with other relevant eye conditions

Eye conditions are frequently misunderstood, so here’s a quick overview of the ones we most commonly treat

Astigmatism

Astigmatism is caused by abnormalities in the cornea and the lens.

If you have astigmatism, the front of your eye is not a perfectly round shape like a football. Instead, it is more oval like a rugby ball. This gives the front of your eye an asymmetric curvature, so light scatters as it goes into your eye. This produces a jagged and slightly distorted image. Learn more about astigmatism here.

Treatments for astigmatism

Cataracts

A cataract is the clouding of your natural eye lens.

The natural lens is just behind the pupil of your eye, and it helps to make a clear image on your retina. Usually, this lens is crystal clear.

As a cataract develops, the lens becomes increasingly milky, causing a greenish cloudiness. It may also cause a glare in bright lights and change in the focus of the eyes, needing a frequent replacement of your glasses. Eventually, the sight does not improve with a change of glasses. Find more information on cataracts here.

Treatments for cataract

Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a condition that causes the pressure inside the eye to be too high. If left untreated, this excessive pressure can damage the nerve that carries the vision to the brain; in severe cases, this can lead to blindness. Learn more about glaucoma here.

Treatments for glaucoma

  • Eye drops
  • Eye surgery

Hyperopia / Long-sightedness

Long-sighted – also known as hypermetropia or hyperopia – is when you cannot see things up close. It’s exactly the opposite problem to short-sightedness. Learn more about long-sightedness here.

Treatments for long-sightedness

Keratoconus

Keratoconus is an eye condition that affects the shape of your eye. Rather than your eye growing in a sphere shape, it grows in a cone-shape causing your cornea to progressively thin and bulge.

Keratoconus can cause significant visual impairment, or it can go unnoticed, and your vision remains normal. Learn more about keratoconus here.

Treatments for keratoconus

  • Corneal cross-linking
  • Contacts
  • Eye glasses

Lazy eyes

The usual cause of having a lazy eye is when the eye is very out of focus as a child. This leads to the brain ignoring the image from that eye, and the brain doesn’t upload the software necessary to analyse the vision. Learn more about lazy eye here.

Treatment

The treatment of amblyopia or lazy eye is to patch the good eye in order to force the lazy eye to work harder.

Treatment is only effective in children under the age of seven.

Myopia / Short-sightedness

If you are short-sighted (also known as myopic) you can see things that are up close but can struggle to see things further away. This is because light entering the eye is focused in front of the retina when it should focus on the retina. It focuses too soon. Learn more about short-sightedness here.

Treatments for short-sightedness

Presbyopia

Usually, between the ages of about 45 and 55, the autofocus mechanism in our eye gradually fails. When this happens, we have to increasingly rely on glasses to read computer screens or printed matter. Learn more about presbyopia here.

Treatments for presbyopia

  • Reading glasses
  • Refractive lens exchange
  • PRESBYOND

Links to more information about lens replacement…

Educate yourself further by reading the links below

The NHS provides a thorough guide on lens replacement surgery, as well as laser eye surgery, with a comparison between the two. Click here for more information.

WebMD has a great guide that provides information on intraocular lens implants. Click here for more information.

The Royal College of Ophthalmologists provides an excellent guide on refractive lens exchange. Click here for more information.

The NHS shows what the recovery time will be like for a patient that has been through cataract surgery or lens replacement. Click here for more information

About the experts

Meet the My-iClinic founders, Mr John Bolger and Ms Bola Odufuwa. Two consultant eye surgeons who made it their life goal to make your life better.

Bola Odufuwa

Consultant Ophthalmologist
Clinic Director
MBBS DO FRCS (Ed) FRCOphth MSc

Bola Odufuwa is a consultant ophthalmologist at The Royal Free Hospital and My-iClinic. Her specialities include cataract, glaucoma, paediatric, and laser refractive surgery. Bola has had extensive training at Moorfields Eye Hospital, London, where she gained expertise in the management of various eye conditions.

Bola Odufuwa’s special interests include optimal refractive outcomes following cataract surgery, non-penetrating glaucoma surgery, and assessment eyesight in children with special needs: particularly dyslexia and autism.

Mr John Bolger

Consultant Ophthalmologist
Clinic Director
FRCS DO FEBOS -CR

John Bolger is a Consultant Ophthalmologist and Clinic Director at My-iClinic. His specialities include ophthalmology, laser refractive surgery (SMILE, Presbyond, LASIK, PRK, PTK), refractive lens exchange (RLE), cataract surgery, glaucoma treatment and macular degeneration.

Over the course of his career, John Bolger has carried out over 35,000 cataract operations, 20 of which were for eye surgeons. He has also taught over 1500 young ophthalmologists worldwide as they begin their surgical careers.