By Elizabeth St. Germaine
On October 14th The Huatulco Rotary Club in coordination with the “World Cataract Foundation” out of Memphis, Tennessee, organized cataract operations at the Huatulco Naval Hospital. Eighty- two people received successful cataract operations.
Cataracts are a common affliction, relatively easy to treat. The lens of the eye, which is normally transparent, becomes opaque. As we get older the proteins in the eye begins to decompose and the symptoms are generally:
- The vision turns blurry.
- Eyes become sensible to light.
- Double vision Need for more intense light to be able to read
- Poor night vision Colors become yellowed or indistinct.
The surgery is performed under local anesthesia by an ophthalmology surgeon. The opaque covering is removed surgically and a lens is permanently implanted, with a great probability of success. The surgery takes about 40 minutes per eye and only one eye is attended at a time. Recuperation is approximately 2 weeks of taking it easy, and is not a very unpleasant experience, but makes a huge difference in the lives of the patients.
One example is our friend, Eladio Ramirez, a farmer, who, has lived alone for 40 years in the community of El Zapote. He became a widower at the age of 39 when his wife died giving birth to their daughter. Over the years of farming, sunlight damaged his vision little by little until he was almost blind, which impeded him from working. He has been surviving by charity from his neighbors , one of which heard of the cataract campaign and encouraged him to be examined as a candidate for the surgery. Fortunately after the preliminary studies, he was assigned a space for the surgery. Thankfully, Eladio can now take care of himself and has a better quality of life.
Rotary would like to thank the the Municipal DIF of Santa Maria Huatulco, The Maternal/Infantile Hospital, The General Hospital Of Pochutla, volunteers of The Health Services Of Oaxaca, the DIF of San Miguel Del Puerto and the seven doctors and nurses from the “World Cataract Foundation.”