What is a cataract?
Cataracts are any type of clouding that occurs to the natural lens of the eye. This lens sits right behind the pupil (black opening) and is responsible for focusing light on the back of the eye. It also helps protect the back of the eye from UV damage by absorbing these harmful rays before they can travel back to the more sensitive structures.
I am asked this question at least a few times a week by patients approaching their early 40’s. And as diplomatic as I can, I explain to the patient that it’s caused by an incurable condition called AGE. Of course, I never use that word, I might use the phrase “over a period of time,” or “reduced ability to focus,” but patients are smart enough to read between the lines.