A cataract is described as a clouding of the lens in your eye. It causes a gradual blurring of vision in one or both eyes, although it can’t spread from one eye to the other.
In the majority of patients, cataracts are age related, known as age-related cataracts, and are caused by the lens hardening and becoming cloudy. Cataracts are also more often found in people with some diseases such as diabetes. They can be congenital (present at birth), traumatic (caused due to injury to the eye) and drug induced (from steroids).
If a cataract interferes with your daily activities, surgery will usually be recommended. It’s a straightforward operation that’s effective in most patients.
At Berkshire Independent Hospital we run a specialist clinic for the assessment and treatment of cataracts. We offer micro incision cataract surgery (MICS), the latest in cataract surgery technologies that requires minimum or no stitches, reduced discomfort and faster recovery.
Blocked tear ducts
A blocked tear duct is a blockage, either partial or complete, in the pathway that carries your tears from the eye surface into the nose. Your tears can't drain normally so you often have a watery and irritated eye, with tears overflowing on to your face and cheek. Other symptoms include: redness of the white part of your eye, recurrent eye infection, painful swelling near your inside eye corner, eyelid crusting and pus discharge from the lids and surface of your eye. Adults may develop a blocked tear duct due to an injury, an infection or a tumour.
Your consultant ophthalmologist will treat the cause of the blockage, for example if the duct is blocked due to a long-term infection then antibiotics will most likely be used.
Surgery may be advised to restore normal tear drainage. During surgery tiny tubes or stents are used to open the passageway or a new channel may be created from the tear sac to the inside of your nose.
Excision of Meibomian cysts
Your eyelids have sebaceous glands called Meibomian glands that produce the greasy part of your tears to stop them evaporating too quickly. If a blockage occurs in the Meibomian gland it can swell and form a firm round lump on your eyelid, called a Meibomian cyst or chalazion.
A blocked Meibomian gland may become inflamed or infected and the Meibomian cyst will be red and sore. It may also press on your eye and blur vision. The cyst sometimes bursts through the skin or through the lining of the eyelid.
Meibomian cysts often get better on their own but if they persist for weeks or months an incision and curettage may be advised. It’s a minor operation performed under local anaesthetic that involves making a small cut on the inside of your eyelid and scooping out the contents of the cyst.
Entropion eyelid treatment
An entropion happens when the lower eyelid rolls inwards causing the lashes to irritate the front of your eye, known as the cornea. It can affect one or both eyes and results in an uncomfortable watery eye. It’s often an age-related condition.
Eye drops are usually recommended for mild entropion. Severe entropion can be painful and lead to vision loss as the cornea becomes damaged. Surgery may be recommended if you’re in considerable discomfort or if your eye’s health is at risk. Lid surgery is performed under local anaesthetic to treat entropion on a day case basis.