Cataracts capable of producing dense amblyopia require timely surgery. Removal of unilateral, visually significant congenital lens opacities within the first 6 weeks of life is necessary for optimal recovery of vision. In young children, significant cataracts with uncertain time of onset also deserve prompt and aggressive treatment if recent development is at least a possibility. For bilateral, dense congenital cataracts, surgery is recommended within the first 10 weeks of life. However, small partial cataracts may sometimes be managed nonsurgically; pharmacologic pupillary dilation may permit good vision despite a central opacity (see also the section Visual Deprivation Amblyopia, earlier in the chapter). Childhood cataract is discussed further in Chapter 23.
Excerpted from BCSC 2020-2021 series: Section 10 - Glaucoma. For more information and to purchase the entire series, please visit https://www.aao.org/bcsc.