The crystalline lens in the eye is a transparent structure.[image:577 align=right width=200 height=150] A cataract is an opacity that develops in the crystalline lens of the eye or in its envelope, varying in degree from slight to complete opacity and obstructing the passage of light. Cataract typically progress slowly to cause vision loss and are potentially blinding if left untreated.

Risk factors

Age, sunlight, severe diarrhoeal dehydration, antioxidant deficiency, smoking, corticosteroid therapy, hereditary.

Senile cataract

Morphologically, the senile cataract can occur in two forms, the cortical and the nuclear.[image:576 align=right width=200 height=150]


Also known as the soft cataract.

Stages of maturation
  • Lamellar separation
  • Incipient cataract
  • Immature cataract
  • Mature cataract
  • Hypermature cataract


Also known as the hard cataract.

In nuclear cataract sclerotic changes occur in the lens, beginning in it's centre are spreading to the periphery.



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