Medanta hospital has introduced a new cataract suite which is virtually seven machines in one.
Cataract surgery has come a long way. From the use of hand-held blades a decade ago to the use of bladeless technology in the form of laser, and from there to the very recent advancements in the type of operating machines and software, cataract surgery has become safer, more accurate and hassle free. The surgery these days is fully computer-guided.
"We have a perfectly integrated system now, wherein imaging, scanning, planning and delivery, everything is in conjunction. One machine is able to do the work of four people who were on four different consoles that reduces chances of human error significantly," said Dr Sudipto Pakrasi, chairman, Medanta ophthalmology division, who has done six procedures using the new Verion machine.
The system also has the most advanced software in the world which helps surgeons give exact positioning of the person’s eye even when he or she is lying on the table for the procedure.
"Positioning of the lens is extremely important for best results post-surgery, and this software helps us figure out the exact location where the lens needs to be placed," Dr Pakrasi explained.
The eye centres these days are ensuring people get quality treatment at par with international standards, especially when they are willing to pay for the services.
The Centre for Sight chain of eye hospitals in the country also installed the Femto-Second laser cataract removal technique, soon after it received US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval in the end of 2010.
The use of this technique results in better outcome in terms of quality of vision and surgical precision than earlier forms of cataract treatments in practice.
"The new technique has been entirely machine-assisted, resulting in better accuracy and improvement of the quality of vision post-surgery and has been giving consistent results," said Dr Mahipal S. Sachdev, chairman, Centre for Sight.
"As there is no use of blade and no loss of blood, the risk of infection has significantly come down and recovery has become much faster," he added.
However, the steep price in comparison to the conventional cataract surgery still makes laser a niche treatment procedure as it costs approximately Rs 50,000 more.