Use of advanced technology making cataract surgery easier and safer

  • Cataract is the leading cause of blindness, which can be treated by surgery of eye lens

Kathmandu, October 10

With the availability of advanced technology in hospitals for cataract surgery, patients are getting easy and quick services.

Most modern cataract procedures involve the use of a high-frequency ultrasound device that breaks up the cloudy lens into small pieces, which are then gently removed from the eye with suction. This process is called phacoemulsification —  a modern cataract surgery — in which the eye’s internal lens is emulsified with an ultrasonic hand-piece and aspirated from the eye.

Phacoemulsification is performed with smaller incisions than previous surgical techniques for cataract removal, promoting faster healing and reducing the risk of cataract surgery complications, such as a retinal detachment.

Cataract is the leading cause of blindness in the country, which can be treated only by the surgery of eye lens. It is a clouding of the lens in the eye which leads to decrease in vision.

Cataracts often develop slowly and can affect one or both eyes. Symptoms may include faded colours, blurry vision, and halos around light, trouble with bright lights, and trouble seeing at night.

According to Dr Neyaj Kausar Mikrani, an eye specialist at Nepal Eye Hospital, nearly 30 patients visit the hospital for treatment on an average while nearly 15 people undergo cataract surgery.

“Nepal Eye Hospital has the capacity to conduct 25 cataract surgeries, but  it is conducting only 15 surgeries a day at present,” he added.

Small incision cataract surgery, if conducted manually costs nearly Rs 8,000 but surgery conducted through phacoemulsification process costs Rs 10,000 to 12,000 depending on the lens used by patients.

“Cataract develops gradually with increasing age especially after 50 that leads to blurring visions. Treatment or surgery can completely cure it,” he said.

As per the data of the hospital, people suffering from cataract are more from the Tarai region compared to the people from hilly and mountain regions.