ROCKLAND COUNTY, N.Y., June 12, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Healthy vision is the daily focus of Rockland Eye Physicians & Surgeons' expert, New York (NY) ophthalmologists, but this month Rockland cataract surgeons, Drs. Glen Weiss and Robert Chen turn their attention to cataract awareness and education. Despite being the leading cause of blindness in U.S. adults, cataract eye disease is highly treatable.
"Cataract blindness is extremely preventable. That's our main message," said Dr. Weiss, "There is no need for patients to suffer from misunderstanding or fear. Cataract surgery is highly safe and effective in restoring vision."
A cataract is simply a clouding of the lens inside the eye. It can form in one eye or both and gradually blurs vision as it grows. Initially, cataracts may create slight nearsightedness or farsightedness that can be corrected with glasses. Over time, however, the clouding becomes too significant for prescription glasses to correct and must be removed to restore sight.
- Blurred or clouded vision, often described as looking through mist
- Small dots or spots in vision
- Vision worsened in darker or brighter conditions
- Trouble seeing while driving at night
- Difficulty reading
- Altered appearance of colors
- Frequent changes in glasses prescription
"Our goal is to make sure patients know the truth about cataracts. It's very likely that each one of us will develop some degree of cataracts as we age. The more people know about the early warning signs of cataracts and how safely they can be removed, the better they understand about this disease," explained Dr. Chen.
June is Cataract Awareness Month and to help spread the message of clear vision, Dr. Chen and Dr. Weiss share often-confused truths about cataracts.
TRUTH #1 - Eye drops cannot prevent, reverse, or cure cataracts
Cataracts are part of the natural aging process of the eye and cannot be prevented. Some lifestyle factors may improve your eye health such as a balanced diet, proper eye sun protection, and avoiding smoking. An awareness of your family history regarding cataracts or other eye disease is also important.
Cataracts cannot be reversed; surgical removal of cataracts is the only proven treatment for restoring vision.
TRUTH #2 – Straining your eyes will not cause or worsen cataracts
The exact cause of cataracts is unknown, though experts believe they are primarily attributed to aging. Some factors such as diabetes or prior eye injury may increase risk of developing cataracts. Simply straining your eyes at a computer or while performing close-up tasks will not cause cataracts to form or worsen.
TRUTH #3 – Cataract surgery is highly safe and recovery is pain-free
Cataract removal surgery is the most common adult surgery in the U.S. At Rockland Eye Physicians & Surgeons, Dr. Chen and Dr. Weiss are highly skilled in performing painless, no-stitch cataract surgery in a comfortable Ambulatory Surgical Center with no need for general anesthesia. Within minutes, your blurred lens is removed, an artificial lens is placed, and vision is restored with a 95% success rate.
Patients recover comfortably in just days, many with better vision than they had before the cataract
s surgery. "Beyond eliminating the cataract, artificial lenses can now correct distance vision, astigmatism, and complete vision improvement. They work almost like a permanent contact lens," explains Dr. Weiss. Any remaining need for glasses can be determined about a month post-surgery.
TRUTH #4 – Cataracts will not grow back after surgery
Cataract surgery permanently restores vision. Your cataracts will not grow back after surgery. Some patients may develop a growth of a thin membrane behind the new lens, which can be treated with a quick and safe laser procedure.
Rockland Eye Physicians & Surgeons recommends regular eye exams and vigilance regarding any changes in vision, particularly in older adults. The five eye specialists at Rockland Eye treat a full range of pediatric and adult eye conditions for patients in New York's Rockland, Westchester, Putnam, and Dutchess counties, www.rocklandeye.com.
Rockland Eye Physicians & Surgeons, PC
365 Route 304
Bardonia, New York 10954
171 Ramapo Road
Garnerville, New York 10923