Novel era of eye care | Daily News
Visakha Vidyalaya’s 30th Annual Susan George Pulimood Memorial Oration

Novel era of eye care

Champa  Priyadarsini Banagala
Champa Priyadarsini Banagala

The 30th Annual Susan George Pulimood Memorial Oration of Visakha Vidyalaya, Colombo, will be held this year on October 6 at 5 pm in the Jeremias Dias Hall of the school. The event was postponed from July due to the Covid pandemic.

This year, the Oration will be delivered by Dr Champa Priyadarsini Banagala

(nee Kaluarchchi ) MBBS (Colombo), Diploma in Ophthalmology (PGIM) Master of Surgery in Ophthalmology (PGIM) FRCS (Edinburgh) Consultant Ophthalmologist National Eye Hospital (1989-2013)

The subject of the oration: ‘Novel Era of Eye Care: Marvels and Concerns’. Last few decades saw an unprecedented integration of modern technology and ophthalmology paving way for a novel era of eye care. Some such modern technologies that enriched ophthalmology are laser technology, new bio compatible materials, nanotechnology, computer engineering and signal processing.

Lasers which are extremely narrow beams of light have replaced eye surgeon’s scalpel. This has tremendously enhanced the precision of eye surgery allowing “cuts” and implants at tissue level. New biocompatible materials have made it possible for replacing opaque lenses of cataract patients with artificially produced lenses that function almost like the natural ones. Minimally invasive glaucoma surgery utilizes highly miniaturized devices implanted to the eye to enhance the fluid drainage. Novel innovations such as retinal microchip implants and gene therapy will soon revolutionize the modern eye care giving hope and solace to the blind people with retinal pathology.

While acknowledging the vast benefits/positive contributions technology has brought in to the modern world, we also need to take remedial measures to overcome some negative consequences brought in due to exposure to computer, smartphone or other digital screen for long periods of time. Since it is very unlikely to cut back on cell phone and digital devices use any time soon, educating the general public on how to live with such technologies while minimizing the effects to their eyes is another challenge confronted by the modern day ophthalmologist. They have successfully met this challenge opening yet another chapter of novel eye care in the twenty first century.

Due to the prevailing Covid-19 pandemic special safety guidelines as set out by the Ministry of Health will be followed. All participants are advised to wear a mask and wash their hands. Seating will be arranged as per the guidelines.