Dealing with sight loss in a developing world that is built for the sighted means increased dependency and reduced confidence. Blindness segregates those who have lost their sight from everyone else. Visual impairment often limits the ability of the person to perform everyday tasks and to move about unaided.
The story of Narashimhulu was no different. His vision loss affected his quality of life, his work, and the ability to interact with the surrounding world.
Narashimhulu worked for many years and provided for his family. But one-day tragedy struck him badly. While chopping wood, a wood particle struck him in his eye. Grappling with pain, he visited multiple hospitals for over a month, trying to find some form of pain relief and a solution. He was informed that his entire nerve system had been damaged.
Unfortunately, Narashimhulu had already sustained a similar injury a few years before, when a small stone had hit his eye whilst working. This further complicated his new injury, and he started losing his eyesight at an alarming pace. During one of his hospital visits, one of the staff members told Narashimhulu that he should consider going to the Tej Kohli Cornea Institute.
Dr. Somasheila at the Tej Kohli Cornea Institute remembers her first diagnosis of Narashimhulu. She recollects that he complained of an infection in his left eye, however he actually had a rampant viral infection in both of his eyes, which had been there for a few years. Whilst his right eye was stable, the infection in his left eye was so severe, that the doctors had to perform an emergency corneal transplant, which was done free of cost.
Narashimhulu is now able to see on his own and isn’t dependent on others to perform daily tasks. Dr. Somasheila believes that he will be able to find employment again once that he fully recovers from his condition.
Quality healthcare still isn’t a complete reality in developing countries like India. However, the problem of gaining access to quality healthcare is a bigger challenge for India’s large marginalized population. Against this backdrop, doctors at Tej Kohli Cornea Institute are helping patients regain their vision and win their independence back.