Congenital cataract

Dr Ammar Haouimi and Dr Henry Knipe et al.

Congenital cataracts are a major cause of blindness with early detection the most important factor in reducing impact on future vision. 

Incidence is ~3 per 100,000 in the United Kingdom 1. Although the incidence tends to be higher in areas with increased rates of congenital infection 5.

  • low birth weight prematurity

Congenital cataracts may be unilateral or bilateral 2.

There are over 50 causes of congenital cataracts. Some common causes include:

  • assessment of the lens is recommended on second-trimester anomaly scans 3
  • lens will appear echogenic

The MRI features of congenital cataract include 6:

  • increase thickness of the lens(es) > 4 mm
  • low signal on T1
  • high signal on T2

Congenital cataracts that cause significant visual disturbance are treated early with surgery 1,2

Article information

rID: 35800
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Infantile cataracts
  • Congenital cataract
  • Infantile cataract

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1
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