Cataracts develop gradually and are classified in four 4 stages. Delaying treatment for cataracts is rarely an option as surgery is almost always inevitable. Left untreated, the greatest risk for not removing a cataract is vision impairment, vision loss, or even blindness.

Cataracts are the clouding the lens of the eye. Typically, due to aging, proteins in the lens of the eye begin to break down and clump together obstructing clear vision in the eye. Changes in vision due to cataracts include blurry vision, colors that look faded, poor night vision, sensitivity to bright lights and glares, halo around lights, double vision, and frequent changes in prescription. As cataract symptoms progress, risks include the inability to carry out daily activities, difficulty reading, inability driving at night or in low light conditions, and increased risk of falls or injury. 

While the early stages of cataract development may only require a change in eyeglass or contact lens prescriptions, by the time a cataract reaches the mature stage, stage 3, most patients will be prompted to seek advice on cataract removal surgery from their eye doctor. For most patients, it will take years for a cataract to develop to this stage. At this point, a person’s vision will be significantly compromised. The opaqueness of the cataract will begin to appear milky white or amber in color and will have spread to the outer edges of the lens. Quality of life and daily routine will be affected. If a person chooses not to have surgery by this point, the cataract will continue to worsen, becoming both dense and hardened. Once a cataract reaches stage 4, also known as a hyper-mature cataract, surgery is still recommended and necessary, but will be more difficult to remove. The lens will shrink and may even partially dislocate. If left untreated, hyper-mature cataracts can cause inflammation and increased pressure to the eye which may result in glaucoma. 

Do not suffer through the frustration of strained, blurred, and potentially permanently altered vision. Cataracts are very common and cataract removal surgery comes with a 99% success rate. Schedule your comprehensive eye exam at Pendleton Eye today to improve your vision while determining if the signs and symptoms you are experiencing are early warning signs of cataract development. Call 760-758-2008 or visit our website at WEBSITE to achieve better vision safely and successfully.