Know Your Eyes: Cataract Risk Factors

March 30, 2016 — by Thomas Byrd, MD
Tags: Cataract Surgery Eye Care

A senior couple, arm in arm, smiling after cataract treatmentAt Byrd Eye Clinic, we proudly provide world-class ophthalmological care at a local level. This care includes not only the comprehensive range of exceptional eye care procedures, including cataract treatment of the highest quality, but also the surpassing standard of patient education that you would expect from a top-rated eye care practice. Dr. Thomas Byrd and his team understand that providing patients with knowledge about their eyes and how they work is the best way to help them preserve good ocular health between visits to Byrd Eye Clinic.

In the case of cataracts, early diagnosis is necessary to the provision of timely and effective surgical treatment. By educating patients about cataract risk factors during appointments at his Detroit, MI eye care practice, Dr. Byrd gives them the information they need to know about when to seek diagnosis and treatment for cataracts. Patients who are at higher risk of developing cataracts can be proactive about treatment, coming into our office for regular screenings in order to maintain the health of their eyes.

If you are at heightened risk for cataracts, we encourage you to visit Byrd Eye Clinic today. Simply contact our practice, and we will happily help you to schedule an appointment with Dr. Thomas Byrd.

Are You at Risk for Cataracts?

First, it is important for you to understand that you are at risk for cataracts simply by being human. Every human being who lives long enough will eventually develop cataracts, the clumping of proteins on the eye’s natural lens that results in clouded vision and, if left untreated, eventual blindness. Indeed, cataracts are the leading cause of blindness worldwide; however, they rarely result in blindness in the United States, where surgical removal of cataracts is accessible to most.

If you are aged 60 or above, your risk for cataracts is automatically higher than when you were under the age of 60. In fact, with each year that passes, your risk increases significantly. Approximately half of all American adults aged 75 or older either have cataracts or have had treatment for cataracts. If you are 60 or older, you should have a comprehensive eye exam at least once every two years.

There are other factors that could increase your risk for cataracts. The more of these that apply to you, the greater your potential risk:

  • Ethnicity: People of Hispanic or African heritage are at greater risk for developing cataracts at an early age than Caucasians and Asians.
  • Gender: Females are at greater risk for developing cataracts at an early age than men.
  • Diabetes: Diabetics, particularly those with poor control of their blood glucose levels, are at high risk for cataracts.
  • Previous eye diseases or injuries: If you have had a prior eye disease or injury, you could be at higher risk for cataracts.
  • Smoking and drinking: If you smoke or if you consume alcohol in excess, you are at higher risk for cataracts.
  • Genetics: If you have a family history of cataracts, you are at higher risk for cataracts.

Learn More about Cataract Risk Factors

To learn more about cataract risk factors, please contact Byrd Eye Clinic today.

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