Photo has been used for illustrative purposes.
Gulf Today, Staff Reporter
A newborn baby from Oman was brought to Al Zahra Hospital Dubai, due to regressing eyesight, looking for a corneal transplant. At just 2 months of age, it was found that the baby was suffering from Peters Anomaly, a congenital defect that causes an opaque area in the centre of the cornea and furthermore quickly leads to blindness.
Peters Anomaly is a rare eye condition, affecting every 1 in 1 million people. The condition is caused by genes that affect the embryonic development of the eye, with the side effects including blurred vision, glaucoma, cataract, and possible blindness. In addition, the treatment preferred is typically a corneal transplant and is usually initiated from an early age of 2 months up to 2 years.
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Typically, when a child has Peters Anomaly with bilateral opacity, a penetrating keratoplasty, which is a type of corneal transplant, is performed to clear up and improve their vision. This procedure comes with several complications and is specially challenging for children, leading to graft failure in most cases. In addition, most cases require revision surgeries and experience multiple side effects including glaucoma and blurred vision.
The newborn baby was treated by Dr. Sandip Mitra, a Specialist Ophthalmologist with more than 20 years of experience in the UAE practising at Al Zahra Hospital Dubai. After a detailed exam, the baby was diagnosed with Peters Anomaly with Bilateral Corneal Opacity. Dr. Mitra is a highly skilled Specialist Ophthalmologist, with extensive experience and throughout his years of practice, he has performed approximately 10,000 corneal grafts.
The common treating procedure in dealing with Peters Anomaly is corneal transplants. Due to the procedure’s complications and challenges, Dr. Mitra decided to perform a simple procedure called Pupilloplasty, to manage the newborn’s condition. Pupilloplasty is a surgical procedure, performed on the iris to adjust the shape or function of the pupil. According to Dr. Mitra, Pupilloplasty is the most suitable procedure for such cases because it prevents post-operative complications and allows the access of light into the eye.
Once the procedure was completed, the child immediately recovered with adequate eyesight, gaining the ability to recognise the parents for the first time. Choosing a different route allowed the child to avoid major surgeries and to improve vision significantly.“The Pupilloplasty is a smart choice that opens the opportunity for other patients of Peters Anomaly to undergo a simpler procedure with a higher rate of success. Moreover, numerous children suffering from Peters Anomaly can avoid going through multiple revision surgeries and can find an effective treatment at an early age, allowing them to develop normally. The corneal transplant can then be done when the child becomes an adult, usually at the age of 18, when the chances of success are much higher and the benefits much bigger.”
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