Cataract surgeries: restoring independence and dignity

An elderly man traveled all the way from Bamiyan province to NOOR to have his eyes examined.  His eyesight had been poor for many years, and he needed an assistant  to guide him when he walked.    After being examined at the clinic, he was diagnosed with cataracts in both eyes. 

 

Because he had traveled such a long distance, the doctors at NOOR arranged the operations quickly.  They first operated on one eye, and then waited a week and operated on the other eye.

When the bandages were first removed, the man exclaimed in wonder, “I can see daylight!”  The man’s sight improved well, in both eyes, and because of this he could walk around by himself, no longer dependent on others.  

In Afghanistan, many people’s homes are very basic.  In rural areas like Bamiyan, the houses have outside kitchens, outside bathrooms, and rural roads.  Most of the roads are either uneven foot paths, full of rocks and bumps at every turn, or wider mud-packed roads that pose many dangers for a blind man.  This man would have been housebound and completely dependent upon his family for almost all of his needs. 

Now because he can see again, he will be able to take himself to the bathroom, wander around enjoying the outdoors, and even feed himself much easier.  NOOR does cataract surgeries almost every day of the week, as they continue to restore eyesight to elderly people across the nation; they not only improve their ability to see, but they improve their quality of life, their independence and their dignity.