What are cataracts?

As we age, the structure of the proteins that make up the lens of the eye begin to change. These structural changes in the lens of the eye are often the result of oxidative stress from sunlight exposure and antioxidant depletion. As the proteins in the lens of the eye change, it causes clouding and distortion of the lens of the eye. This clouding of the lens of the eye is referred to as a cataract, and eventually leads to a decrease in vision and increase in glare or halos (especially at nighttime). Most cataracts occur as a normal part of the aging process, but can sometimes be caused by medical conditions (diabetes), medications (steroids), injuries to the eye or face, or previous eye surgeries (retinal detachment repair). Cataracts typically begin forming in someone’s 50s and are usually slowly progressive. Cataracts often do not become a problem until you are in your 60s or 70s, but a cataract sometimes affects the vision at earlier ages in some patients

How can I reduce my chances of developing cataracts?

Progression of cataracts can occur with exposure to ultraviolet light (sunlight) and exposure to chemicals that stress the body (such as cigarette smoke or other toxins). Improving diet, exercising, wearing sunglasses at all times outdoors, and quitting smoking are all ways to slow down cataract formation. Despite perfect adherence to these guidelines, cataracts are a natural part of the aging process and cataracts will still develop over time.

How can I tell if I have a cataract?

Cataracts often cause a gradual blurring or dimming of vision. Some people see a “halo” or haze around lights, or have hazy or double (or multiple) vision. At first, the symptoms may only occur in dim light or when you face bright, oncoming car headlights. Over time the glare may make night driving especially difficult. Advanced cataracts can cause distorted or blurred vision that occurs all the time and cannot be improved with glasses.

Is it possible to have a cataract and not notice it?

Yes. If the cataract is small, it may not disturb your vision or cause any symptoms at all. Most cataracts begin in the late 40s and early 50s and very gradually worsen over time. Since this worsening and distortion of vision occurs very gradually, it is often not noticeable at first. Even a dense cataract may not be noticed if the other eye is providing clear vision. Unless it is very dense, a cataract is usually not visible to the naked eye of an observer.

Cataract Illustration

What is the Treatment for Cataracts?

Currently, there are no eye drops or medical treatments that are effective in treating or reversing cataracts. The only effective treatment is surgical removal of the cataract (cloudy lens). This is performed in the comfort and safety of our state-of-the-art outpatient surgery center using the latest treatment techniques and technology. Our experienced eye surgeons will remove the cataract that has become clouded, and replace it with an artificial lens, known as an intraocular lens, or IOL.

cataract surgery

How is traditional cataract surgery performed?

A cataract patient is prepared using conscious sedation using medications such as Valium, Versed, and Fentanyl. Once relaxed, the patent is transferred to an operating suite where the cataract surgery will be performed. Traditional cataract surgery is performed using blades to make incisions on the surface of the cornea. Through these incisions, the surgeon makes a small opening in the capsule surrounding the cataract.

The cataract is then divided into pieces and removed from the eye using phacoemulsification and aspiration. Lastly, a new artificial lens implant (called an intraocular lens or IOL) is placed into the eye. The entire surgery takes 10 to 15 minutes and is typically pain-free. Patients go home the same day and visual recovery typically takes 2-5 days for an uncomplicated surgery.

How is laser-assisted cataract surgery performed?

Azar Eye Clinic was the first clinic in Lafayette, LA and Acadiana to offer cutting edge Femtosecond Laser Assisted Cataract Surgery (FLACS) with the Alcon LenSx laser. Azar Eye Clinic was the first facility in Lafayette, LA and Acadiana to implant the newest Alcon PanOptix trifocal IOL. No one in Lafayette, LA or Acadiana has more experience with LenSx laser cataract surgery than the Azar Eye Clinic.

Customized laser cataract surgery (also called FLACS) enhances many of the crucial steps of cataract surgery by performing laser incisions, laser capsule opening, laser softening or division of the cataract, and correction of low amounts of astigmatism. With laser cataract surgery, the need for blades is eliminated because the laser performs all of the incisions. Customized laser cataract surgery offers increased precision, reproducibility, faster visual recovery, and also the ability to correct low amounts of astigmatism.

Cataract Surgery Illustration
cataract laser surgery
Laser Cataract Surgery at Azar Eye Clinic in Lafayette, LA


"My experience with the doctor and staff was so nice and pleasant and they always kept me in the loop." - Leslie Clark


"Been to all of the eye clinics in Lafayette LA and by far the professionalism and friendliness of the staff is awesome compared, I have become good friends with most of the staff there and would recommend Azar eye clinic over all the others I've been to." - Tim Hunt


"Fantastic service!!! Drs really care about your eyes and explain everything." - Terry Bourque


"Staff was awesome. Dr Keating was great. Looking forward to cataract surgery soon." - Kathy Johnson


"My husband had appointment this morning for exam, staff was very friendly. Was in and out within an hour. Dr. Sicard was very professional, informative and very nice. I would highly recommend Azar Eye Clinic. All around a great experience." - Jennifer Putnam


"To anyone needing cataract surgery I would highly recommend the Azar Clinic. They were so professional and courteous during my procedure. They even took time to call the afternoon of the surgery to check up on me. My surgeon was Dr Fredrick Hall. I'm glad I had it done there." - Nan Guidry


"Both of my parent's been coming here for years. This was my first time and the staff was awesome. What I really liked was the time they took to explain everything. I definitely would recommend more family and friends" - Mickie Francis


"My wife and I both had cataract surgery here. Great folks, highly recommend" - Larry Langlinais


"I am looking forward to visiting Azar Eye Clinic next week. Just from talking with Dr. Azar and his staff I feel comfortable and at home." - Kevin Courville


"They are the best, from the front office to the back. Friendly people." - Mary Touchet


"I love the staff. I felt like they truly cared about my well-being. I have already recommended Dr. Keating to a friend." - Linda Finley


"The Nurses, Staff, & Doctors are very polite & patient. Love the faculty." - Latricia Davis


"The staff was very kind and very knowledgeable." - Linda Dilley


"They are very nice and professional." - Linda Martin


"They are very professional." - Kristy Thompson


"I love my Doctor Graul!" - Charles Frederick


"Thank God for you, Penny and Dr. Paul Azar. Don't know what I would have done without Ya'll. Thanks so Much." - Harold Marks

Get In Touch

516 Saint Landry Street
Lafayette, LA 70506

Telephone: (337) 235-7791