A congenital cataract is a clouding of the lens of the eye that is present at birth. The lens of the eye is normally clear. It focuses light that comes into the eye onto the retina.
• An infant doesn’t seem to be visually aware of the world around him or her (if cataracts are in both eyes)
• Gray or white cloudiness of the pupil (which is normally black)
• The "red eye" glow of the pupil is missing in photos, or is different between the two eyes
• Unusual rapid eye movements (nystagmus)
• Complete eye examination by ophthalmologist
• Examined by a pediatrician who is experienced and treating inherited disorder
• Blood tests
If congenital cataracts are mild and do not affect vision, they may not need to be treated, especially if they are in both eyes.
Cataract Removal surgery:
Moderate to severe cataracts that affect vision, or a cataract that is in only one eye, will need to be treated with cataract removal surgery. In most (noncongenital) cataract surgeries, an artificial intraocular lens (IOL) is inserted into the eye. The use of IOLs in infants is controversial. Without an IOL, the infant will need to wear a contact lens.