How does congenital cataracts affect vision?

A congenital cataract causes the same symptoms as adult cataracts—a clouding in the lens of the eye that can cause blurry vision or blindness. Located behind the iris of the eye, the lens is normally clear and allows incoming light to clearly focus an image on the retina.

Does congenital cataract cause blindness?

Congenital cataracts can happen in one or both eyes. If congenital cataracts aren’t treated early, they can cause vision problems or blindness.

What happens if congenital cataract is not treated?

Without early intervention, congenital cataracts cause “lazy eye” or amblyopia. This condition then can lead to other eye problems such as nystagmus, strabismus and inability to fix a gaze upon objects.

How bad can cataracts affect your vision?

It can make your vision dim, blurry, or cloudy, and colors might look faded. A cataract also might make you more sensitive to light, or you might have trouble seeing at night. They typically begin to form around age 40 as proteins in the lens start to break down.

What are the conditions associated with congenital cataract?

Congenital cataracts often occur as part of the following birth defects: Chondrodysplasia syndrome. Congenital rubella. Conradi-Hünermann syndrome.

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Is congenital cataract treatable?

The only treatment for congenital cataracts is cataract surgery. If your child has congenital cataracts that are significant enough to require treatment, seek the services of a cataract surgeon who specializes in congenital cataract surgery for children.

What is the treatment for congenital cataracts?

How Are Congenital Cataracts Treated? Ophthalmologists do surgery to remove congenital cataracts. This usually happens soon after the diagnosis, as early as 6–8 weeks of age. During the procedure, the ophthalmologist removes the cloudy part of the lens and may put in a flexible plastic artificial lens.

Is congenital cataract progressive?

Congenital cataracts are present at birth but may not be identified until later in life. Prenatal and family history is helpful. Some cataracts are static, but some are progressive.

Why is congenital cataracts urgent?

Congenital cataract requires urgent attention; early treatment is the factor that most determines the final visual outcome. Visual development and maturation can be severely affected by the presence of lens opacities during the first ten years of life.

Do congenital cataracts grow?

Congenital cataracts can continue to develop, although this normally takes months to years. The ophthalmologist would assess how much the cataract is affecting your child’s vision and then discuss treatment with you if they feel it is needed.

Do cataracts make your vision blurry?

As the cataract continues to develop, the clouding becomes denser. A cataract scatters and blocks the light as it passes through the lens, preventing a sharply defined image from reaching your retina. As a result, your vision becomes blurred.

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Can cataracts make your vision better?

Cataracts can cause nearsightedness, which can actually improve vision in those who are already nearsighted or farsighted. This is a strange phenomenon, often called “second-sight,” and can sometimes mean people with cataracts see better without glasses.

Can cataracts cause distorted vision?

Over time, cataracts will distort your vision so significantly that you will lose the ability to do activities that you enjoy, such as reading, driving, operating machinery and equipment, or doing intricate crafts. This can lead to frustration and depression, and possibly put you or others in danger.