How the Eye Works

Before we begin the discussion about cataracts and cataract surgery, I’d like to first introduce you to the way the eye works. I find it most helpful to think of the eye as a video camera hooked up to a TV monitor. A video camera has a lens to focus the light, film (or electronic sensors) to capture the image, and a cable to transmit the image to the monitor or recording device. In a similar manner, the eye has two surfaces that focus light: the cornea, or clear surface of the eye; and the lens which sits behind the iris, or pupil. The cornea and lens, together, focus light onto the retina which is similar to the film or electronic sensors in a camera. The retina then converts light into a signal that is transmitted to our brains through the optic nerve, which is similar to the cable that connects a video camera to the TV or VCR.

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