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Cataracts in Seattle, WA

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Cataracts are usually a natural part of the aging process. After the age of 40, proteins within the eyes' lenses start to degrade or lump together. The opacity resulting from cataracts eventually worsens and keeps light from hitting the retina the way it needs to. This fogging of the lens of the eye causes worsening vision, and typically, complete blindness if not discovered early and treated correctly.

Dr. Scott Campbell and his staff can detect and address cataracts in the earliest stages and guide you in successfully navigating progressing symptoms. At SPEX, we treat people who have cataracts nearly every day. Developing cataracts is quite common — so common that cataract surgery is the leading surgery performed in the United States. Approximately two million individuals have cataract surgery every year. Cataracts usually form quite slowly so patients with the initial stages typically are not even aware of their condition. Slow-forming cataracts are a major reason why having a comprehensive eye exam at least every two years is critical to your overall eye health.

Call our Seattle, WA office soon to schedule a comprehensive exam or see how we can help you treat your cataracts.

The most common and noticeable symptom of cataracts is cloudiness in the lens of the eye. At first, this may not affect your vision, but as the cataract grows over time, you may start to notice that the world looks dim, blurry, or otherwise obscured. Other signs of cataracts include "halos" (bright rings that appear in your vision from light sources), sensitivity to light, trouble seeing at night, and double vision. You may also experience sudden or frequent changes in your vision. The symptoms of cataracts tend to come on slowly. If you ever notice pain or changes in your vision, schedule a comprehensive eye exam with Dr. Campbell and our team as soon as you can to start diagnosis and treatment for cataracts.

The development of cataracts is a normal part of the aging process and the natural degradation of the proteins of the lens of the eye. This process occurs in everyone, though there are further behavioral and medical issues that may aggravate the process. Lifestyle choices, like tobacco use, drinking (excessive consumption), and prolonged UV-ray exposure, have been linked to cataracts, as well as some medical conditions, like diabetes mellitus and hypertension. Other factors that can exacerbate the process include:

  • Genetics
  • Previous eye surgery
  • Injury to the eye
  • Degenerative myopia
  • Prescription or nonprescription use of steroids

To determine if someone has a cataract, an eye doctor conducts an in-depth eye exam. The team at SPEX is highly trained on the tests included in a thorough cataract exam. The typical tests to look for cataracts are all extremely easy, fast, and painless.

To begin, Dr. Campbell will perform a standard vision test. This is generally done with an eye chart. After that, he will often conduct a contrast sensitivity test, which is very similar to an acuity test but measures how clearly the patient can see contrast in images. After these tests, a slit lamp exam is often performed. For a slit lamp exam, Dr. Campbell uses a special microscope that shines a strong but extremely thin "slit" of light into the eye to look at its outermost structures. Lastly, he will conduct the retinal exam and depending on the results, a potential acuity meter (PAM) exam. Prior to these tests, dilating the pupils using special eye drops is required. Enlarging the pupils is very important because it enables the largest vantage point to examine the complete surface of the lens for any cataracts. If cataracts are detected, then the PAM exam might be done. A potential acuity meter (PAM) exam measures a patient’s possible clarity of vision without the cataract. The potential acuity exam can be quite important in selecting which IOL to use if the patient opts to have surgery.

Dr. Campbell is magnificent. His office is filled with the most cutting edge technology. He does the most thorough and wholistic diagnostic examination. I’ve been going for 29 years! That’s how good he is.

A.W. Google

I’ve been going to Spex and Dr. Campbell for almost 25 years. He also takes care of my wife and my kids. If you’re thinking about a new eye, do yourself a favor and go to Spex and see Dr.Campbell and his staff. You’ll thank me later!!!!

B.S. Google

If I could give 6 stars, I would. Everything about this practice is top notch. The staff and Dr Campbell are super friendly, highly professional, and go out of their way to listen and give expert care accordingly. Their selection of frames is wonderful as well. Love the new office - really beautifully designed!

S.W. Google

Oh, Dr. Campbell... you took such amazing care of me. You did everything, so I was so confident in my eye care. You broke the mold.... I guess I'll just have to fly across the country for my care!!! #noonecomesclose

J.M. Google

Everything about my experience was top-notch. The new location is excellent and easy to reach by public transportation. The staff are not only kind, but clearly expert professionals. Dr. Campbell has a gift for narrating his actions, allowing his patients clarity about what he is seeing in the various scans. He then provides options for treatment. Highly recommended.

T.C. Google


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Seattle, WA patients who suspect they have cataracts or who haven’t had a comprehensive eye exam recently need to make a visit with SPEX right away. People over the age of 40 need to have comprehensive eye exams every two years in order to detect and manage cataracts and other eye diseases. With an early diagnosis, our team can create a customized plan to help you with your condition.

About Us
Can cataracts be prevented?

There is no surefire way to prevent cataracts. However, certain lifestyle choices may help reduce the risk of their development or delay their onset. These behaviors include protecting your eyes from sunlight by wearing sunglasses, quitting smoking, eating a healthy diet high in antioxidants, and maintaining overall good health.

When is cataract surgery necessary?

Cataract surgery is usually recommended when the cataracts significantly affect your vision and impact your daily activities, such as driving or reading. However, the decision to undergo surgery ultimately depends on the individual, your unique vision circumstances, and your consultation and visits with Dr. Campbell and the SPEX team.

How common are cataracts?

Cataracts are relatively common, particularly among older adults. They are one of the leading causes of vision impairment and blindness worldwide. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), cataracts account for approximately 51% of world blindness, representing about 65 million people. In the United States, it is estimated that more than 24 million individuals aged 40 and older have cataracts, and that number is expected to grow in the coming years due to an aging population.

*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.