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Understanding Cataracts and Cataract Surgery

Everyone is born with a natural lens. As we age, the natural lens will become cloudy, which is called a cataract. Cataracts may also be present at birth or develop as the result of an eye injury. However, cataract surgery is one of the most common operations performed in the U.S.

During cataract surgery, the cloudy lens is removed with a technique called phacoemulsification, which makes a small opening in the side of your cornea. By ultrasonic vibrations, the lens is broken into small pieces and removed. The natural lens is then replaced with an artificial (manmade) lens known as an intraocular lens (IOL).

Usually, the doctor will not perform cataract surgery on both eyes at the same time but can be done a few days to a few weeks apart, if needed.

See your eye care specialist for a thorough evaluation if you think you may have cataracts.