Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in worldwide


Karachi: Head of Ophthalmology Department, Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre (JPMC), Dr Alyscia Cheema, has said diabetes is the leading cause of blindness worldwide including Pakistan.

She explained that diabetic eye diseases refer to a group of eye problems that people with diabetes may face as a complication of diabetes and all can cause severe vision loss or even blindness. She informed that diabetic retinopathy is the most common diabetic eye disease and a leading cause of blindness.

She said if someone has diabetes, he should regularly visit to his ophthalmologist for eye exams to avoid eye problems and complications occur in diabetic patients.

She said eye infection is most common disease in summer season due to carelessness in the use of inferior quality contact lenses that cause eye infections which later lead tow blindness or visual impairment. She said eye infections could be averted only when a person experiencing unusual symptoms get their eyes examined by a specialist in early stage.

Dr Alyscia said polluted water and dust in air are also caused for eye infections in country like Pakistan. She said that the problem of infections linked to contact lenses was not confined to the lower or middle income groups only as educated and rich people are also visiting the eye consultants or ophthalmologists. She said poor lens fit was also a factor behind many eye infections.

She said cataract, glaucoma, retinal, detachment; squint, refractive errors and eye tumors are major eye diseases. She said cataract is common disease which is growing with the age. She said treatment at early stages of the disease is a better outcome as if ignored it could result in complications.

Dr Alyscia informed that around 200 to 250 people with different eye infections and diseases visit Outpatient Department (OPD) ophthalmology department of JPMC on daily basis. She said department receives big number of patients with eye disease on daily basis as treatment is costly at private hospitals.

She said the department offers retinal, cataracts and other eye surgeries free of cost for every deserving patient under Zakat fund. She said trauma related eye infections also surge in Karachi due to bomb blasts, injuries and other reasons. She advised the people to avoid self-medication in case of any eye injury and infections to save eyesight.

Dr Alyscia said eye diseases are serious issue and eye surgery should be carried out from qualified eye specialist surgeons. She advised the diabetes patients to regularly consult with ophthalmology experts to avoid further complications.

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