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About Types of Cataracts

A cataract is a clouding of the lens in the eye that affects vision. Most cataracts are related to aging, and cataracts are very common in older people. By age 80, more than half of all Americans either have a cataract or have had cataract surgery, according to government studies.

It is important to know that cataracts can occur in either or both eyes. They cannot spread from one eye to the other

There are three main types of cataracts. The most common, nuclear cataracts, involves diffuse cloudiness throughout the lens. A cortical cataract, located in the mid periphery of the lens, is orientated similarly to the spokes in a wheel. A subcapsular cataract develops in the posterior outer layer of the lens, creating a “ground glass” appearance on slit lamp exam. The subcapsular cataract often causes more difficulty with reading and can be associated with glare symptoms.

Diagram from NIH.gov

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