AIIMS’ report on blindness

According to a new report of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare untreated cataract is the reason of blindness in 66. 22% of the total casesin India. Cataract surgical complications, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, corneal opacities are the other causes of blindness in Indians accounting for 7% percent of total.

The report says that approximately 47,99,274 people are blind in India i.e. around 360 people per one lakh of the population. The rate of blindness is higher among the illiterates (3.23%) and rural population (2.14%). If district wise data is considered then Thrissur ,Kerala and Thoubal, Manipur have the lowest population of blind people while Bijnor, Uttar Pradesh has highest number of blind people.

People prefer non- government hospitals anf private setups over government clinics for the treatment of cataract. Only 39.3% people got operated for the cataract eye surgery in government hospitals. Report also mentioned the reasons as to why the cataract is left untreated. The major reasons cited are expenses of operation, unawareness about the cure of cataract, denial of treatment by surgeons.

Major eye disorders:

  • Cataract: In cataract the natural lens of eye starts getting cloudy and eventually leads to blindness if left untreated.
  • Glaucoma: In glaucoma the optic nerve of eye that sends message to  brain gets damaged and can result in permanent irreversible blindness.
  • Corneal opacities: This medical conditions refers to the cloudiness of cornea, the outermost layer of the eyeball
  • Retinopathy: In retinopathy blood vessels of light sensitive tissues of eye get damaged.





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