Halos and Glare

There are 2 main types of cataract surgery. The more common type is called phacoemulsification (phaco) or “Ultrasonics.” The doctor makes a tiny incision in the eye and breaks up the lens using ultrasonic waves. The lens is removed, and an intraocular lens (IOL) is put in its place. In most modern cataract surgeries the IOL eliminates the need for thick glasses or a contact lens after surgery.

If you’re seeing halos around lights, it’s best to schedule an appointment with an eye care professional. If a medical condition is causing these halos, this can help you get diagnosed and treated early.

The number one reason we see halos is patients have corrective lenses that don’t have special coatings… …and so you have these special coatings that are put on these lenses that can reduce the glare and halos and they’re actually called anti-reflective coating….


Slideshow: A Visual Guide to Cataracts

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Cataracts can affect your color vision, making some hues look faded. Your vision may gradually take on a brownish or yellowish tinge. At first, you may not notice this discoloration. But over time, it may make it harder to distinguish blues and purples.

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Cataract Symptom: Glare

If you have vision loss caused by cataracts that can’t be corrected with glasses or contact lenses, you may need surgery to remove the cataracts. In cataract surgery, the cloudy lens is removed and replaced with an artificial lens. The surgery, which is done on an outpatient basis, is safe and extremely effective at improving vision. If cataracts are present in both eyes, surgery will be done on one eye at a time.

Blurry vision at any distance is the most common symptom of cataracts. Your view may look foggy, filmy, or cloudy. Over time, as the cataracts get worse, less light reaches the retina. People with cataracts may have an especially hard time seeing and driving at night.

Halos and Glare

What Are Cataracts?

Sometimes, a cataract may temporarily improve a person’s ability to see close-up, because the cataract acts as a stronger lens. This phenomenon is called second sight, because people who may have once needed reading glasses find that they don’t need them anymore. As the cataract worsens however, this goes away and vision worsens again.

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Cataract Symptom: Double Vision

Recent developments in cataract surgery can correct both near and distance vision. They minimize or eliminate the need for reading glasses after surgery. Conventional “monofocal” lenses only correct for distance vision, meaning reading glasses are still needed after surgery. Multifocal IOLs (Intraocular Lens) can be an option in some patients to help improve both distance and near vision. “Toric” implants are available to correct astigmatism. A lens for better color vision is in development (shown here next to a dime).

Another early symptom of cataracts is glare, or sensitivity to light. You may have trouble seeing in bright sunlight. Indoor lights that once didn’t bother you now may seem too bright or have halos. Driving at night may become a problem because of the glare caused by street lights and oncoming headlights.

Why Do I See Halos Around Lights

What Causes Halos Around Lights After Cataract Surgery | Shelly Lighting

One of the big advances is a material called Silicone Hydrogel. Adding the silicon material has increased the oxygen flow of these lenses up to six-fold than the traditional soft lenses. But in absence of this person having any history of corrective error, the most likely thing we’d be looking at is just the lenses of the eye—the front lens, the cornea.

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Cataract Surgery Innovations

When somebody comes on with sort of a recent onset halos and never experienced that before, we would think that there’s a condition in their eye that would be causing that— something again that would be maybe a corneal dystrophy, or obviously if they wear contact lenses then there would be the possibility that the contacts would be causing it.

In order to produce a clear image, the eyes must complete a specific process that heavily relies on the integrity of each of the ocular structures.

Why Am I Seeing Halos

Halos Around Bright Lights After Cataract Surgery | Shelly Lighting

Most cataracts can be diagnosed with an eye exam. Your eye doctor will test your vision and examine your eyes with a slit lamp microscope to look for problems with the lens and other parts of the eye. The pupils are dilated to better examine the back of the eye, where the retina and optic nerve lie.

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Cataract Symptom: Second Sight

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Glare is more of a condition where a patient’s vision is reduced or affected by light. Halos are a physical appearance of just a ring around lights that patient’s notice. Typically something to do with the lens—whether it’s the glasses lens in front of their eye, contact lens or the natural lens, the cornea or the lens internally the crystal lens. You know some aberration within that lens is typically what’s causing the halo.

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