Blind man’s sight restored after 55 years

June 18th, 2011 - 9:37 am ICT by IANS  

New York, June 18 (IANS) A man in New York, who was blind in one eye for 55 years, has got his sight back.

The patient - now 63 - was eight years old when his retina was detached after he was hit in the right eye with a stone.

Doctors said restoring sight after this length of time was a first in medical science, BBC reported quoting the Journal of Medical Case Reports.

The man went to the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary, saying he had pain and redness in his eye. There was swelling, bleeding and a high fluid pressure in his right eye. After washing the eye and treating with a drug that stopped new blood vessels forming, the eye went from completely blind to being able to detect bright light.

Doctors thought this was encouraging enough to try re-attaching the retina.

After surgery, the man was able to see again.

Olusola Olawoye, one of the doctors involved in the process, said: “To the best of our knowledge this is the first report of visual recovery in a patient with long-standing traumatic retinal detachment.”

“This is not only a great result for our patient but has implications for restoring eyesight in other patients, especially in the context of stem cell research into retinal progenitor cells which may be able to be transplanted into diseased retinas to restore vision.”

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