Daily Medical Story: “The Man who Destroyed his Eyes,” thus cures cataracts

alopah Date:2021-08-17 11:47:13 From:alopah.com
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A cataract is a clouding of the lens of the eye, which changes from transparent to opaque, blocking light from entering the eye and thus affecting vision.


In 600 BC, Shathrou, who was known as the Hippocrates of India, was very good at cataract surgery. At that time, cataract surgery was performed not only by famous doctors, but also with a special tool called Jabamukhi Salaka, a bent needle that loosened the lens and pushed out the cataract. However, in the medical conditions of the time, the operation was so dangerous that the patient could be completely blind if not careful, so the operation should only be performed when absolutely necessary.


Shasrul has developed a rudimentary sense of disinfection, washing his hands and shaving before surgery, and staying in a steam room with his patients. The operation begins after a series of ritualistic steps. He warmed the patient’s eyes by breathing on them and rubbing them with his thumb. When he saw his patient’s cataract membrane, he had his assistant hold the patient’s head while he put a traditional Jabamukhi Salaka needle into the pupil to puncture the cataract and let the pus out. He then applied an oil sponge to the incision and kept it on for seven days. It doesn’t mean that the patient is cured after 7 days, if you’re lucky, you can see the sun again, if you’re not lucky, you can only see a little bit of light, you can’t read or write at all.


In the 7th century, Arabs learned the art from the Indians and spread it to Europe. But these “eye doctors” are not professional at all, they are some walking around the peddler or tooth extraction master.




It can be imagined that these lack of specific scientific knowledge and experience, even less the guidance of specialized ophthalmologist, are only half-skilled doctors, how can it be so difficult to carry out the technical operation? At the time, these “daredevil” quacks would operate on patients in the middle of a busy town for just seven cents.


The surgical tools, with iron or copper handles, resembled the needles used by shoemakers to repair shoes and butchers to stab calves. The “ophthalmologist” uses such tools to peel the cloudy lens of a person’s eye and push it rudely back into the vitreous body.


In a matter of minutes, the patients were able to see again, much to the amazement of onlookers.


Under the treatment of these “magic doctors”, the patient will soon be plunged into darkness forever due to the infection of the wound. As a result, these “magic doctors” have new nicknames – “eye wrecker”, “blind master”.


Fortunately, at that time, one of the court doctors named Battig stood up and denounced these “inexplicable people” with indignation. In 1583, he published The Service of the Eye, a detailed guide for ophthalmologists, in which the modern concept of anatomy began to take shape.


Cataract is a common disease of the eye, presenting clinically as opacity of the lens itself or lens capsule. A lens is like the lens of a camera. Only when it passes through the light can it take a picture. The reason why our eyes can feel the colorful world is that the light can focus on the retina through the cornea of the eye. Once the crystal is cloudy, it will block light from entering the eye. At this point, you will feel blurred vision, fear of light, the objects you see become dark, deformed, and even blind.

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