Hands-free cataract surgery successfully conducted

Monday, July 11, 2011

In a pioneering effort, eye surgeons from Maxivision here (Hyderabad) on Saturday successfully conducted an eye surgery without using the human hand.

Conventional surgeries need 40 per cent involvement of hands to make primary and secondary incisions and to cut open the lens capsule of the eye so that the cataract is removed using modern methods such as phaco surgery.

Surgeons, led by Maxivision CMD Dr. Kasu Prasad Reddy, used Femtosecond Laser, branded as Customlens, to conduct the surgery.

After the surgery, the laser could be used to conduct a refractive surgery to reduce the dependency on glasses and contact lenses. Customlens is developed by German company Technolas.

“The significant part of this new method is that surgeons now can make precise incisions, which is usually not possible with hands. This ensures better vision quality and excellent results. Apart from removing cataract, we are also using this laser to conduct refractive surgeries so that patients need not use spectacles,” Dr. Reddy told The Hindu.

The surgery was beamed live to eye surgeons, who were in a surgery convention in Chennai organised by Intraocular Implant and Refractive Society on Saturday.

This is the first time in the country such a novel surgery was taken up by using Customlens, the surgeons said.

“The surgery is hands-free and there is no margin of error. The safety and precision of the surgery has improved now. This technology is 100 per cent error-free,” said Dr. Reddy.

Traditionally, there are two steps involved in cataract surgery.

The first one involves using the surgeon's hand to make entry wounds known as primary and secondary incisions and to open up the lens capsule to remove the cataract.

In the second step, the cataract is removed by phaco surgery, which involves making a small incision and removing the cataract.

The Femtosecond Laser, which is introduced to India by Trivitron Healthcare, will be 10 to 15 per cent costlier than conventional surgeries.

“In future, when technology is readily available, prices will come down. At the end of the day, this method is safer,” Dr. Reddy said.


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