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Pediatric Cataract Treatment in Dubai

Proper diagnosis and pediatric cataract treatment can prevent serious and permanent vision problems.

Pediatric cataracts are characterised by cloudy eye lenses. Cataracts prevent light from passing through and reaching the retina. In babies, whose vision is still developing, this inhibits the brain from receiving the visual stimulation it needs to establish visual pathways from the eyes to the brain. Left untreated, cataracts in children can lead to permanent blindness.

Pediatric cataract treatment is necessary, especially among those who may still be undergoing vision development. A pediatric cataract surgeon can perform pediatric cataract surgery and intraocular lens implantation; this will remove the cataract-affected lens and replace it with an artificial lens.

Through a personalized approach and cutting-edge technologies, your pediatric cataract specialist can help provide relief and improve your child’s visual wellness, allowing your little one to grow and develop with clearer, healthier eyes.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Pediatric Cataract

What is pediatric cataract?

Pediatric cataract is a condition characterized by a cloudy or misty eye lens. The cloudiness of the lens keeps the lens from correctly functioning. This can drastically reduce the amount of light that reaches the retina and even prevent light from passing through, adversely affecting one’s vision.

Cataracts can be unilateral (i.e., affects one eye) or bilateral (i.e., involves both eyes). If your child has cloudiness in one or both eyes, visit a pediatric cataract specialist. Without an appropriate and timely pediatric cataract treatment, this condition can lead to blindness.

What causes pediatric cataracts?

Pediatric cataract has several potential causes. Congenital cataracts or cataracts present at birth may be due to genetics (i.e., inherited genes or genetic conditions) or an infection during pregnancy. Meanwhile, cataracts acquired during infancy and childhood may be due to eye trauma, infection, or specific medical conditions.

Congenital cataracts, often present in both eyes (i.e., bilateral), may be caused by an inherited gene that predisposes a child to having cataracts. One in five of those who have congenital cataracts has a family history of the condition. In some cases, the cause of congenital cataracts is a genetic condition like Down’s syndrome, which causes a chromosomal abnormality. A population-based study indicates infants with Down’s Syndrome have a 300 times higher risk of getting congenital pediatric cataracts than infants without the condition.

Some infections during a mother’s pregnancy may also increase an infant’s risk of congenital cataracts. These infections include German Measles (rubella), toxoplasmosis, chickenpox, cytomegalovirus, and herpes simplex virus.

An infection suffered by a baby or a child may lead to acquired pediatric cataracts, also known as infantile or juvenile cataracts. Ocular toxocariasis, an eye infection caused by a parasitic roundworm that may be present in animal faeces (commonly dogs and cats), is one such infection.

Medical conditions like galactosaemia and diabetes may also cause pediatric cataracts. Galactosaemia is characterised by the body’s inability to break down sugar galactose or the sugar in milk. Diabetes, meanwhile, is a condition that leads to unduly high sugar levels.

Finally, acquired pediatric cataracts may also be caused by eye trauma or an injury to the eye.

How is pediatric cataract treated?

The type of pediatric cataract treatment indicated will vary according to the type of cataract (particularly the cause), the number of eyes affected (whether one or two) and the severity of the condition. Less severe cases may be managed using eye patches, dilating eye drops and eyeglasses. These treatment modes may suffice initially if the cataract does not affect the child’s vision. However, pediatric cataract surgery may be the only feasible pediatric cataract treatment option in severe cases, especially in congenital cataracts where vision development is impaired.

How does cataract surgery work?

Cataract surgery entails the removal of the affected lens. Moving forward, the child must wear contact lenses or eyeglasses to compensate for the lens removed in surgery. However, in some cases, pediatric cataract surgery and intraocular lens implantation may be done. In this procedure, the pediatric cataract surgeon inserts an intraocular lens implant into the eye to permanently replace the removed lens.

After lens removal (with or without lens replacement), babies and children require further treatment. This is especially warranted in pediatric cataracts where the clouding of the lens might have impaired eye-brain connections. As mentioned earlier, they may have to wear contact lenses or eyeglasses to correct blurry vision.

Can wearing an eye patch treat cataracts?

Occlusion therapy, done by patching the stronger eye, may also be warranted in unilateral pediatric cataracts. Wearing a patch over the stronger eye forces the brain to acknowledge the visual signals from the weaker eye, signals it has gotten used to ignoring because the stronger eye sends much more precise cues. Patching will help train a child’s vision in their weaker eye.