On average, it costs $1,500 for Carminia's treatment
- Impact on patient's life
- Cultural or regional significance
What kinds of symptoms do patients experience before receiving treatment?
Cataracts cause clouded, blurred, or dim vision, decreased night vision, sensitivity to light, seeing 'halos' around lights, double vision, and decreased color vision. This is a common eye condition which causes or threatens to cause blindness or otherwise majorly impact productivity and quality of life.
What is the impact on patients’ lives of living with these conditions?
Low vision is a problem anywhere in the world. In Guatemala it is a massive problem, because people depend on their eyesight to be able to work. Losing vision can end a career, ruin a family’s financial security, and majorly impact quality of life.
What cultural or regional factors affect the treatment of these conditions?
Uncontrolled medical conditions definitely predispose someone to getting cataracts, for example.
- Impact on patient's life
- Risks and side-effects
What does the treatment process look like?
Treatment for this condition involves consultation with a trusted eye specialist. Surgery is usually a simple affair, requiring just a day or two in the hospital. Before and after eye surgery, drops are usually needed, which are quite expensive. The entire process typically takes 2-3 months to complete.
What is the impact of this treatment on the patient’s life?
This treatment saves vision, which in turn helps affected individuals live healthy, happy, and productive lives.
What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?
Complications and risks associated with this surgery are rare, but include: infection in the eye (endophthalmitis), swelling and fluid in the center of the nerve layer (cystoid macular edema), swelling of the clear covering of the eye (corneal edema), bleeding in the front of the eye (hyphema), and detachment of the nerve layer at the back of the eye (retinal detachment).
How accessible is treatment in the area? What is the typical journey like for a patient to receive care?
There are no eye surgeries available through the public system. There are several good private clinics, including the ones our medical partner uses, but the very high cost of treatment keeps people from getting care. With financing from Watsi, our medical partner can overcome this barrier for their patients.
What are the alternatives to this treatment?
There are not many alternatives. Specialists and treatments are available in urban centers if a patient can pay for them. People who can’t pay do not have available treatments.