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PEDIATRIC STRABISMUS & CATARACT

Strabismus

Poorly aligned eyes or strabismus is one of the leading causes of worldwide vision loss.  Many individuals become societal outcasts and have difficulty getting married or finding a job. While excellent care is available in the United States and other industrialized nations, patients in developing countries frequently have no treatment available and have to suffer with a lifetime disability.  It is estimated that two percent of the world’s population suffers from strabismus.

  • Esotropia is one form of strabismus which involves a crossed eye.

  • Exotropia involves outward drifting of the eye.

  • Eye muscle surgery is very effective in correcting many forms of strabismus.  Many developing countries are in desperate need of trained strabismus surgeons

Pediatric Cataracts

Cataracts are defined as cloudiness of the normally clear natural human lens.  The cloudy lens blocks light rays from entering the eye. In infants and children, this prevents normal visual development. Trauma, infections, and genetic factors may all cause cataracts but, in many children, the cause is never identified. Prompt diagnosis and effective treatment are critical to insure good visual development. Cataracts in adults are far more common and almost never lead to permanent vision loss. Cataracts in children, however, are rare, but those who do develop cataracts risk profound and permanent vision loss.  Recent advances in technology and management offer tremendous hope for afflicted children. The major obstacle to treatment in many developing countries, however, remains poor access to quality and timely care.

  • A total or “mature” cataract in a child frequently leads to blindness unless treated promptly and properly.

  • Cataract surgery in children has undergone tremendous advances in recent years.