Why we love what we do – Retinopathy of Prematurity & Strabismus
by Christopher Bardorf, MD
“No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow.” ~Proverb
“Tammy” had been a long time patient of our practice. She was born prematurely, at only 24 weeks, weighing in at 1 Pound, 4 Ounces. She is now a healthy and beautiful 25 year old who recently married her best friend, looking and feeling her best as a beautiful bride.
Her struggles with her vision have plagued her all her life, starting with developing Retinopathy of Prematurity severe enough requiring laser surgery, preserving her eyesight. Children’s Eye Physicians manages the vision care of approximately 1,100 premature infants over the course of a year. Of those babies, about 100 require laser surgery to halt the progression of ROP, saving that child’s eyesight.
I followed Tammy through a variety of problems, many of which are believed to be life long complications of prematurity and in particular for those infants, now adults, who were diagnosed with Retinopathy of Prematurity. She struggled with Retinal scarring, Amblyopia, Astigmatism, and in particular Malignant Myopia and Strabismus. Her myopia was problematic enough to be considered “malignant” a term describing a complicated and severe myopia, also at risk for a detached retina.
Imagine a patient with extremely severe myopia having to wear the proverbial “Coke Bottle” glasses and still having to struggle to see the world normally. This was Tammy, but not on her wedding day. Prior to her big day, I completed the process of replacing both lens in her eyes with Intraocular Lens (“IOL”), and correcting her eye alignment, (Strabismus). All in time for her to fully recover and head down the aisle as a beautiful bride, absent thick heavy glasses, both eyes straight ahead, confidently pointed toward her future.