Why does IMO see prevention as particularly important?
Because, after many years of research and important breakthroughs, more and more disorders can be treated by modern surgery or drugs. The big challenge now is to detect potential eye disorders before they appear and develop in order to apply these advances with maximum effectiveness.
What role do patients play in this challenge?
Patients play a decisive role, often without knowing it. Some eye conditions have no symptoms and can become very serious, so prevention is key. Because of this, the general public should be aware of the importance of regular eye examinations, especially for children and the over 40s. People with a history of eye conditions or special visual or health-related characteristics (high myopia, diabetes, etc.) should also exercise caution and organise an annual visit to the ophthalmologist.
How does IMO contribute to this preventative work?
Fortunately, we have the latest eye examination technology at our disposal, and recent advances in diagnostic techniques enable us to detect potential eye problems that, a few years ago, would not have been possible. The quality of the images of the different parts of the eye is improving, and we can now obtain more objective information about the vision of each patient, even each eye. With all of this in expert hands, we can act faster and more effectively when confronted with certain threats to vision.
What about genetic diagnosis?
It is a key factor in modern medicine, and ophthalmology is no exception. Since moving to its new premises, IMO has been championing genetic research through its new research department, in which ophthalmologists and geneticists work together. They enable us to perform family diagnosis, prognosis of the development of genetic eye disorders and prepare for gene therapies, which, in the near future, will provide solutions to hitherto incurable conditions.