Sunday, November 28, 2010

Article on Ocular Trauma Conference at Doha in Daily Gulf Times

Ocular trauma can be treated, says expert
By Noimot Olayiwola

People suffering from ocular trauma have hopes of regaining their vision even after several surgeries, a clinical researcher said yesterday.
“They might not regain the same level of vision they had before the trauma but potentials for visual recovery are there through many interventions available now,” Weill Cornell Medical Centre Clinical Research director Dr Sziland Kiss said.
He was speaking to the Gulf Times on the sidelines of the Second Qatar Ophthalmology Conference on Ocular Trauma, which concluded yesterday.
The focus of the conference was on prevention and treatment of ocular trauma as many children and young adults in Qatar and around the world suffer from eye injuries.
In the last four years, Qatar has seen a huge increase in serious eye injuries suffered by young people. The Hamad Medical Corporation’s ophthalmologic emergency receives and treats more than 50 cases of ocular injuries every day.
“Ocular trauma is a growing problem among people within the working age bracket and the highest incidences occur among people in the construction sector,” Kiss said.
However, he said people can also suffer trauma to the eyes in the home setting.
“When something strikes the eye or it goes into the eye causing damage or bleeding, that is ocular trauma. The first thing that comes to mind after a trauma is to put the eye together for repair,” he said.
Dr Kiss added that the repair of an eye can be likened to the repairing of a punctured balloon.
“Just think of a balloon that got shrunk when it is punched, the same thing applies to an eye and what to do is to sew it back into shape. Then after two-three weeks you can do a procedure called pars plana vitrectomy,” he said.
“Fortunately, Qatar has most of the advanced technologies to take care of patients in terms of repairing their eyes.”
Dr Kiss occasionally attends to patients, most of them diabetics, at the Hamad Hospital in co-operation with the Cornell Medical College.
He plans to collaborate soon with the Qatar Foundation on conducting research on diabetes.
Speaking at the inaugural session, the ophthalmology department head Dr Fatima al-Mansouri said that annually about half a million post-ocular trauma blindness occurs worldwide.
“Ninety percent of these cases occurred due to causes that were preventable and exposure to risks that could have been controlled with simple and effective occupational safety procedures, proper health education or driving precautions,” she said.
Dr al-Mansouri said effective management protocols to maintain complications are among measures required to meet the growing problem.
She said when the rate of ocular trauma increases without any effective controlling measures, ocular disability rate also increases imposing its negative burden on individuals and communities alike.

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