The crystalline lens in the eye slowly starts to yellow with age and eventually becomes cloudy developing a cataract. This stops light that enters the eye to reach the retina (back of the eye) properly which leads to blurry or cloudy vision.
As you get older the cataract can get worse and start to affect your vision and quality of life increasing the need for cataract removal surgery. This very common procedure, often performed on the NHS, involves remove the cloudy part of the lens and inserting an artificial implant in its place, called an intraocular lens, to improve the vision and ability to see clearly.
The main symptoms of cataracts are blurry vision, glare from bright lights, loss of contrast and colours and sometimes double vision.
There are different types of cataract, the most common being Nuclear Sclerotic cataract which is also known as age-related cataract, others include Subcapsular cataract and Cortical cataract.
The main causes of cataract are age, longstanding exposure to ultra-violet light, family history, diabetes, hypertension and smoking. Longstanding use of steroids and previous eye surgery or injury are also causes of cataract.