Cataracts and photography

PhotoCal

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is there anyone who has had trouble with cataracts? If so, how did you solve them?
 

WaltP

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I have had the regular lens replacement with emergency re-work because of a potentially fatal eye infection - extremely rare i am told. I went home to rest and woke up at midnight blind in the eye that had the bionic implant.
I was rushed back and the fluid drained from the eye and replaced with bionic fluid.
Apparently eye infection must be stopped before it reaches the optic nerve or it becomes unstoppable. They don't tell you that because it occurs once in a few million cases. Lucky me.
So I have a totally bionic eye - yippee!

You should have no problem. Make sure your doctors all know you are a photographer and picky about good eyesight. Generally not an issue at all, unless God just really likes picking on you like She does me, then good luck.
 
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is there anyone who has had trouble with cataracts? If so, how did you solve them?
I had a cataract in my right eye removed around 20 years ago (premature cataract). My opthalmologist surgically removed the old lens and replaced it with a corrective lens implant so I actually ended up with 20/30 vision, which was a big improvement over the previous 20/300 or something. Then he did LASIK on my left eye so I could get around without glasses or contacts, which I'd worn since I was five. 20/20 on my left. He had to go back a couple of years later to laser away some membranous overgrowth, but it's been trouble free ever since, except for the floaters, which can't be helped. I would have it done without hesitation, as it dramatically improved my vision. And, the freedom from glasses or contacts was glorious. (I have to wear reading glasses, but that's because of age)

While the cataract was slowly getting worse (it developed gradually), it affected my night vision and day vision with bad glare, haloing, etc. Driving at night became nearly impossible because oncoming lights and streetlights would flare my vision out. If the sun was up, I would toss the tennis ball up to serve and lose it in a cloud of haze. Even wearing polarized sunglasses wouldn't help.

After the surgery, which was on an outpatient basis and took only a few hours, I had to wear eye shields when I slept and avoid touching my eyes. Had to close my eyes when I showered, and use antibiotic eye drops several times a day. I followed the procedure faithfully and had no issues. After several weeks, I could dispense with the shields. The LASIK surgery was a day or two after the cataract surgery, so I had to keep both eyes shut when I showered, but it wasn't a problem. You just have to discipline yourself.

I need to wear protective sunglasses whenever I'm out in the sun, mainly to keep the gradually growing cataract in my left eye from getting worse, but when the time comes, I'll have that eye done too.
 
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What's are the focal lengths on that baby? I think the 6 Million Dollar Man could zoom to several hundred millimeters. :laugh:
Hehehe... what would the $6 million man cost nowadays? Let's see, that was in 1974.

Adjusted for inflation, he would cost $34,602,343.64 in 2020! Whoa.

Way cheaper to buy the 150-400! :rofl:
 
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Stanga

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I had both eyes done. I then discovered that quite a few pictures that I had taken in the preceding years could do with some corrections.
 

chap

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I had congenital cataracts in both eyes that eventually progressed to the point that everything had a bit of a mist filter over it and night driving was a pretty bad idea. I had phacoemulsification in both eyes a couple of years apart. The procedure itself was pretty easy and even the next day my vision was significantly better. One notable thing is cataracts are apparently very yellow... once the eye shield came off it was amazing how blue everything was. Like Holoholo55 I had a bit of membrane left that eventually clouded up and had to be lasered but that was a 10 minute in-office procedure.
 

MPrince

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I have cataracts in both eyes, though at this point they are small and unobtrusive. When the time comes I'll have cataract surgery, but that is probably years away at this point. I also have glaucoma which, after being stable for 20 years is starting to advance a little bit. Hopefully that advance has been slowed with the addition of new eyedrops. (Working so far at lowering my Intra Ocular Pressures but only time will tell if it is slowing my visual field deterioration.) About a month ago I experienced a vitreous detachment in my left (dominant) eye so I'm currently dealing with filmy blurry vision with large floaters drifting across my field of vision in that eye. Annoying, but unlike retinal detachment it is not serious and the floaters should eventually settle down and the filminess and blurriness go away. In the meantime photography and target shooting are slightly more challenging.
 

PhotoCal

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I have had the regular lens replacement with emergency re-work because of a potentially fatal eye infection - extremely rare i am told. I went home to rest and woke up at midnight blind in the eye that had the bionic implant.
I was rushed back and the fluid drained from the eye and replaced with bionic fluid.
Apparently eye infection must be stopped before it reaches the optic nerve or it becomes unstoppable. They don't tell you that because it occurs once in a few million cases. Lucky me.
So I have a totally bionic eye - yippee!

You should have no problem. Make sure your doctors all know you are a photographer and picky about good eyesight. Generally not an issue at all, unless God just really likes picking on you like She does me, then good luck.

I'm agnostic so ...
 
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Carbonman

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I had lens implants done - it wasn't imperative but I'd had contact lenses for about 40 years and was tired of the fussing around. My opthalmologist said "I can give you implants and the MSP will pay for them" because I had mild cataracts in both eyes but hadn't realized it. He did one eye, then did the other one a week later. Big difference in color transmission!
 
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had about 8 eye operations - detached retinas
Fixed now. One new lens - wasn't bad but a bit darker than new.
I can't speak more highly of the skills of those expert in getting inside your eye and doing precision stuff.
Believe all the specialist says, little to none from the moaners who probably didn't observe the special requirements for a limited amount of time, some of those that give other sound advice but are negative about it all, and by all means trust in your specialist and the advice given there.
The discomfort for a short period is worth the long term gain.
Sight is so precious and being on the receiving end of the possibility of no sight in one eye - then there's only one left, I am forever grateful for the help given.

I'd say to any, don't be afraid of surgery and don't put up with unskilled medical people who fob you off and say 'all will be well', but do nothing, or 'wait a month and come back then if there's no improvement'.

Get your cataracts attended to is all I can suggest.
Then you will see how white those sheets are hanging on the clothes line and the sky is different and so it goes on.

All the best with it.
 

Petrochemist

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I've had both eyes done, having noted multiple images of lights at night (at least 8 per distant light with a single eye).
No real hassles in the operations but I did have one eye become severely blood-shot (looking like the polish flag for most of a week).
It's not made any difference to my photography other than I no longer have to wear glasses (which is a general life difference)
 

ex machina

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I have vitreous detachment in both eyes, but in the right eye it also resulted in retinal detachment. I needed two surgeries on that eye to repair the lifted retina, and my vision remains impaired in that eye: I have a small blind spot in the direct center of my visual field, there is red-sensitivity loss, and there are no longer straight lines in that eye due to the retina stretching and becoming wrinkled during its detachment.

A surgery side-effect resulted in premature cataract formation. The clouded lens was replaced, but due to scaring the surgeon was unable to properly set the replacement lens so now I'm susceptible to a sort of odd double-flare in certain lighting conditions, like headlights of other cars while driving at night. The acuity in that eye is better than it was before, though due to my blind sport I can't measure the improvement, but it's enough to make my current eyeglasses a poor match for the eye.

I'm constantly blinking to displace the massive floater resulting from the vitreous detachment in my left eye, which makes photo editing fun because I'm often unsure whether a shot is actually in focus. ;)

Looking back over this I'm thinking it's likely unhelpful, so I'd add that the actual cataract replacement surgery was an easy outpatient procedure, recovery was super-fast, and had I not been left with visual issues from the retinal detachment, would've greatly improved my vision. I won't hesitate when it's time to do my left eye.
 

PhotoCal

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Simple really ......... just have them removed. Worked for me! :dance3:
You cannot believe the improvement in vision you will experience.
You just had them removed? With no replacement?

I'm interested in hearing what type of lens replacements people have had. Especially those who don't need to wear glasses now and can drive at night.

I use glasses for some activities but not for photography and not for driving.
If cataract surgery will mean wearing glasses more and/or restrictions on driving then there's no point in having the cataract removed (one eye, currently).
 

ex machina

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You just had them removed? With no replacement?

I'm interested in hearing what type of lens replacements people have had. Especially those who don't need to wear glasses now and can drive at night.

I use glasses for some activities but not for photography and not for driving.
If cataract surgery will mean wearing glasses more and/or restrictions on driving then there's no point in having the cataract removed (one eye, currently).
Most people report improved acuity because the replacement lens can be customized to correct your vision.
 
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You just had them removed? With no replacement?

I'm interested in hearing what type of lens replacements people have had. Especially those who don't need to wear glasses now and can drive at night.

I use glasses for some activities but not for photography and not for driving.
If cataract surgery will mean wearing glasses more and/or restrictions on driving then there's no point in having the cataract removed (one eye, currently).
They don't just whack a lens in.
As said above, they take measurements and construct a lens to suit your eye.
The results often lead to no corrective lenses at all (glasses)

To add to my post above I had a brief few weeks of double vision which I could control. It was weird, but when it happened I found I could snap my sight back into gear, so to speak. Hard to explain.
The brain has an amazing ability to reprogram itself and somehow rearrange the signals it gets from the retina.

Cataract surgery is so common, and it's safe, beneficial and makes life enjoyable again for those whose sight has darkened and clouded over.
 

Petrochemist

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You just had them removed? With no replacement?

I'm interested in hearing what type of lens replacements people have had. Especially those who don't need to wear glasses now and can drive at night.

I use glasses for some activities but not for photography and not for driving.
If cataract surgery will mean wearing glasses more and/or restrictions on driving then there's no point in having the cataract removed (one eye, currently).
Before my catracts were done I'd worn glasses all day every day for around 40 years (since primary school). The replacement lenses were made for my eyes so my distance vision is now much better than it had been at any point I can remember (and probably indeed any point before I could remember too). The plastic lenses don't allow my eyes to focus as much as I could previously so i find reading glasses are useful - I can generally read books etc without them but can't manage the very smallest type faces.
Having been short sighted most of my life it has taken a while to get used to the idea of moving print away it I'm struggling to read it.
Because of the lack of focusing adjustment my lenses where made to focus as near perfectly as posible at a distance somewhat short of infinity kind of like a hyperfocal distance. My unaided vision is normally good enough to cover 1m to infinity. I did get a pair of glasses for star gazing but I've hardly ever used them and have quite forgotten wehre i put them. For longer periods of reading i can use just about any cheap (typically £2-3) reading glasses.
 

chap

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I'm interested in hearing what type of lens replacements people have had. Especially those who don't need to wear glasses now and can drive at night
I’m not sure of the exact specs of the lenses I had implanted, but they were measured to match the persciption I needed pre-op for distance vision. Prior to the surgery I was having a lot of difficulty with night driving because oncoming lights caused my vision to nearly white-out due to the cataracts... the surgeries corrected this completely. I do still wear glasses most of the time, though. I have a mild astigmatism which I prefer to correct and both of my implanted lenses are calibrated for distance so I need correction for near vision. One alternative that my doctor offered was to correct one eye for distance and one for near, but when I tried that with contacts I preferred to stick with glasses. The reason for the choice is that the implanted lens isn’t flexible like your natural lens so it isn’t able to focus as closely. I think there may be some newer implant lenses that behave differently, though. (For reference my surgeries were around 10 and 12 years ago)
 

Stanga

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I was already a prescription glasses wearer when I started suffering from cataract. The new lenses have the same prescription as whatever my eyesight was that required me to wear glasses. But the lenses are so good, I can get away with wearing standard off the shelf non-prescription sunglasses. I can basically spot stars in the sky without needing to wear glasses. I can also work on my laptop or a PC without reading glasses as long as my eyes are at least 40cm away. I can manage reading my 5" phone screen from about 20cm without reading glasses.
After the operation I stuck to staying indoors, mostly in bed, for two solid weeks. When I did eventually go out, I wore dark sunglasses for more than a month, before switching to transition lenses. I had a six months break between operations. The pain in the eyeballs lasted for more than a year.
I developed some fogging in my eyes, which meant another visit to the specialist to get those cleared out with a laser. That left me with a couple of black spots, called floaters, inside my eyeballs. They can be distracting at times, especially since they move about over time.
 

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