Comm Eye Health Vol. 14 No. 39 2001 pp 51. Published online 01 September 2001.

Letter. Cataract surgery in developing countries

Badri P Badhu MD

Associate Professor, Department of Ophthalmology, B P Koirala Institute of Health Sciences, Dharan, Sunsari, Nepal

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Dear Editor

I wish to write in response to the expressions of various ophthalmologists published in the last issue of the Journal of Community Eye Health 2001; 14: 30-31, on the method of cataract surgery in developing countries.

It seems that couching is still practised in some parts of the world with better results than ICCE. Because the advantages of ECCE + PCIOL can hardly be exaggerated, the majority of newly trained eye surgeons perform ECCE more confidently than ICCE even in developing countries. So far as the issue of uvailability of YAG laser is concerned, the use of primary posterior capsulotomy can be advocated to avoid its need.

In Nepal, for example, you can hardly find anybody who would be doing ICCE either in outreach camps or in the hospitals. It would be incredible to think of this 10 years ago! I do not believe that ICCE can be done faster than ECCE + PCIOL once one starts doing it.

Nepal’s experience in developing eye care infrastructure for cataract surgery through coordination with the NGOs and INGOs can be an example for many developing countries with huge cataract backlogs.