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Cataracts: Causes and symptoms

Cataracts / Cataracts: Causes and symptoms

Why do cataracts occur?

Although cataracts are largely associated with aging, you should also pay attention if you notice any of the aforementioned symptoms at any age, as they could be the result of cataracts forming due to several other reasons:

  • Younger people who smoke, consume alcohol or spend a lot of time in the sun.

  • Taking certain medications, such as corticosteroids.

  • Injuries or intraocular surgery may also cause cataracts to develop more quickly.

  • Patients with diabetes, arterial hypertension or myopia also have a higher risk of developing cataracts.

  • Cataracts can also develop in a younger patient for no apparent reason whatsoever.

How does a person with cataracts see?

The crystalline lens may begin to lose transparency and become more opaque as we age, which is why aging is the primary risk factor for developing cataracts. In reality, cataracts are nothing more than the crystalline lens aging, so everyone will eventually develop cataracts if they live long enough.

The following are some of the symptoms that may occur if your vision is affected by cataracts. If you notice any of them you should go for an ophthalmology exam.

Blurry vision

The main symptom of cataracts is cloudy vision that is not corrected by glasses. Cloudy vision feels like you are looking through a glass or a bottle. This cloudy vision will prevent you from carrying out everyday activities, such as reading, writing or watching television. Since this is the most common symptom, it is very important that you see a specialist as soon as possible to prevent the cataracts from getting worse and leading to more severe loss of vision.


Colours will appear less bright

Double vision

Improved vision


Other symptoms of cataracts

Half of all people between 65 and 75 years old have cataracts and this increases to 75% for those over the age of 75. There are certain disorders, such as diabetes, which can cause cataracts to develop at an earlier age.

vision with cataracts

Simulated vision with progressive cataract

vision without cataracts

Simulated vision with the transparent lens

Can they be prevented?

As we mentioned previously, cataracts are something that will happen to everyone and the only way they can be treated is with surgery. Therefore, they cannot be prevented.

Despite all the research carried out in this field, there is still no pharmaceutical treatment that can prevent the development of age-related cataracts.