PAEDIATRIC CATARACT

Cataract in children is unique as it may interfere with the normal development of vision resulting in lazy eye
(amblyopia).

Causes

  • Hereditary/genetic disorders
  • Intrauterine infections (TORCHES)
  • Drugs, trauma, metabolic diseases, e.g. Diabetes
  • Unknown

Symptoms

  • A white pupil
  • Older children may complain of poor vision
  • Dancing eyes (nystagmus), squints

Investigations

  • If at lower level reassure patient and refer to hospital

MANAGEMENT

  • Condition is managed surgically under general anaesthesia
  • Surgery can be done as early as one month of age
  • Patching/occlusion therapy in case of lazy eyes (amblyopia)
  • Aphakic children /those less than one year who are not implanted should be given aphakic glasses
    or contact lenses

Prevention

  • Wear protective goggles when hammering, sawing, chopping, grinding, etc.
  • Caution children playing with sticks about risk of eye injuries