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Published by Pham Son

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Published by: Pham Son on Sep 03, 2010
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This Document is preparedfor Sightsavers Internationalby Aravind Eye Care System
Guidelines for developing Diabetic RetinopathyProgramme in India
AVISION 2020:TheRight to Sight India publication
I am very happy to know that Sightsavers International is launching the fight against the Diabetic Retinopathy, next only to cataract. Diabetic Retinopathy has been identified as one of  the causes of blindness or vision impairment by Vision 2020 India. Though the cataract blindness is still a leading cause of blindness, with the help of National Programme along with the support of international non-governmental organizations like Sightsavers, the prevalence has come down from 80% to 62% in the year 2002. It is appropriate to concentrate on diabetic retinopathy now. However, we have to recognize that the magnitude of problem of vision impairment due todiabetic retinopathy is different from cataract problem. While cataract blindness is a curable condition by a simple one time surgical intervention, diabetic retinopathy posses a multitude of   problems but it is preventable if it is detected earlier. There are 41 millions of diabetics in Indiaat present and every diabetic is a potential candidate for loss of vision. It is a symptomless conditionat the treatable stage but when the vision is lost it is perceived as too late for intervention. The National Eye Institute, Bethesda, USA has conducted various trials on diabetic studies and  proved that laser treatment is beneficial as treatment for diabetic retinopathy. But early detectionand management of risk factors responsible for diabetic retinopathy may postpone development of  diabetic retinopathy or preventing the progression of diabetic retinopathy. The systematic approachof health education and creating awareness among patients and various health personnels will goa long way to prevent blindness from diabetic retinopathy.This manual on “Guidelines for developing diabetic retinopathy programme in India” has been prepared by Aravind Eye Care System for Sightsavers International keeping the above  factors in mind and I am sure that it will prove to be an excellent guide for promoting the awareness and preventing vision impairment due to diabetic retinopathy. My hearty congratulations and best wishes for Ms. Elizabeth Kurian and the entire teamwho are all involved at Aravind Eye Care System and the Sightsavers International – India in preparation of this manual.Dr. P. Namperumalsamy Chairman Aravind Eye Care System, Madurai India January, 2008 

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