Eye Institute Physician Saves Vision Through Cataract Surgery

Cataracts, when left untreated, impair vision and can lead to blindness. In fact, cataracts are the leading cause of vision loss in the United States. For many, the development of cataracts is caused by the body’s aging process. Fortunately, life-changing surgeries are available.

Dr. Cynthia A. Bradford leads quality cataract care at the Dean McGee Eye Institute (DMEI). With surgery, cataract patients get a new lease on their vision.

How Cataracts Develop

Cataracts are clouding of the eye’s lens. The lens of the eye is located between the iris and the pupil. The lens of the eye is like a camera. It channels light onto the retina and controls how the eye focuses on near and far objects.

The eye is mostly made of water and protein. The proteins are organized in a specific pattern that keeps vision clear. As the eye ages, the proteins start to clump and cloud the lens. This begins to block vision.

When a cataract forms, it causes faint blurring at first. It then intensifies over time, causing vision to get blurrier and hazy. Cataracts also make the eye sensitive to light and make colors look dim.

The cause of cataracts is unknown, but factors like high myopia, or nearsightedness, family history, and/or smoking may contribute to an increased risk of developing the disease.

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DMEI Physician Provides Expert Care

Dr. Bradford is one of DMEI’s leading comprehensive ophthalmologists which means she provides primary care for all conditions of the eye, including cataracts. In fact, Dr. Bradford’s patients benefit from the fact she provides leadership and education in complicated cataract surgeries for residents in the University of Oklahoma’s Department of Ophthalmology where she uses her expertise to train the next generation of cataract surgeons.

As a professor, she wants each of her students to learn about providing exceptional care.

“I try to teach students that each patient is special. They need to appreciate and feel the privilege of taking care of patients,” Dr. Bradford says.

She wants residents to learn about each individual patient that seeks help at DMEI. Learning about interests and goals will help find solutions.

“Learn about what patients like and what they need to do. Do they like to golf? Do they like to sew? What is their interest in life that they need to see for their enjoyment,” Dr. Bradford says.

Preventing Cataracts

Incorporating more vitamin E into your diet may reduce cataract risk, according to All About Vision.
Annual eye exams, especially for older adults, can monitor for early signs and progression of cataracts.

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