CHENNAI : When it comes to our health, every minute cell in our body plays a crucial role on its terms. And out of those, our eyes, which are our windows to the world, take on the role of navigators. But how often do we notice all those tiny symptoms that tamper with the quality of our vision? It is due to this negligence that silent assailants like glaucoma, believed to be the third leading cause of blindness, often enter the chat. But as an act of defense against it, Dr Agarwal’s Eye Hospital, Chennai, has brought forward a nuanced Minimally Invasive Glaucoma Surgery (MIGS), which is a 10-minute procedure performed to significantly reduce the eye’s intraocular pressure, the root cause of glaucoma.
At a press conference held on Friday by the hospital’s medical team with the notion of creating awareness about glaucoma, Dr Ashvin Agarwal, executive director and chief clinical officer, Dr Sugepriya K, consultant ophthalmologist, and Dr S Soundari, zonal head of clinical services, emphasised on the need of the hour in diagnosing the condition at its earliest. They underscored the importance of accessibility to various medical interventions available for treating glaucoma. Dr Ashvin commented on the initiative, stating, “Awareness is the new smartness, and we must stay informed about what’s happening around us. Given that glaucoma is a silent killer, it requires our diligent attention for a proper diagnosis.”
Talking about the intricacies of the procedure and its advantages and disadvantages, he emphasises that the eye’s anatomy remains unchanged due to its keyhole nature. This keyhole procedure ensures continuous control of intraocular pressure around the clock, redeeming patients from their daily dose of eye drops. As a microinvasive and sutureless method, the procedure involves the insertion of a small stent, the smallest human implant, into the eyes, enhancing fluid outflow and reducing eye pressure therein. Providing a testament to its success, Mukundan, a 63-year-old who underwent surgery, attested, “Due to my work pressure, I often missed my eye drops, and my vision started becoming blurred, but after this 20-minute process, my eye pressure is under control, and my vision is at its best.”
Despite the efficiency of the procedure, the cost always seems to be a concerning issue among patients. Dr Soundari addressed this issue by ensuring the procedure is covered under insurance, typically costing between `50,000 and `1 lakh. Discussing age-related considerations, she noted, “There is no specific age limit, but the older the patient, the more beneficial it is to treat glaucoma using MIGS.”
As the event concluded, attendees delved deeper into the complexities of glaucoma and its impact on individuals. With heightened awareness, early detection, and a continuous pursuit of knowledge, we can work towards dissipating the shadows of glaucoma and thereby creating a world with a clear vision for all.