Rare and simple procedure by Dubai doctor makes newborn baby recognize parents for the first time


The photo has been used for illustration purposes.

Gulf today, Journalist

A newborn baby from Oman was brought to Al Zahra Hospital in Dubai, due to vision regression, seeking a cornea transplant. At just 2 months old, the baby was found to be suffering from Peters anomaly, a birth defect that causes an opaque area in the center of the cornea and furthermore quickly leads to blindness.

Peters anomaly is a rare eye disease, affecting 1 in 1 million people. The disease is caused by genes that affect the embryonic development of the eye, with side effects such as blurred vision, glaucoma, cataracts, and possible blindness. In addition, the preferred treatment is usually a cornea transplant and is usually initiated from an early age of 2 months up to 2 years.


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Typically, when a child has Peters anomaly with bilateral opacity, penetrating keratoplasty, which is a type of corneal transplant, is done to clear up and improve their vision. This procedure comes with several complications and is particularly difficult for children, resulting in transplant failure in most cases. Additionally, most cases require revision surgeries and have multiple side effects including glaucoma and blurred vision.

dr sandip 2 Dr Sandip Mitra

The newborn was treated by Dr Sandip Mitra, a specialist ophthalmologist with over 20 years of experience in the United Arab Emirates and practicing at Al Zahra Hospital in Dubai. After a detailed examination, the baby was diagnosed with Peters anomaly with bilateral corneal opacity. Dr Mitra is a highly qualified specialist ophthalmologist with extensive experience and during his years of practice has performed approximately 10,000 corneal transplants.

The common treatment procedure in the treatment of Peters anomaly is corneal transplantation. Due to the complications and challenges of the procedure, Dr. Mitra decided to perform a simple procedure called Pupilloplasty, to manage the condition of the newborn baby. Pupilloplasty is surgery performed on the iris to adjust the shape or function of the pupil. According to Dr. Mitra, pupilloplasty is the most suitable procedure for such cases because it prevents postoperative complications and allows access of light into the eye.

After the procedure was completed, the child immediately recovered with adequate eyesight, acquiring the ability to recognize parents for the first time. Choosing a different route allowed the child to avoid major surgeries and significantly improve his vision.

“Pupilloplasty is a smart choice that opens up the possibility for other patients with Peters anomaly to undergo a simpler procedure with a higher success rate. In addition, many children with Peters’ anomaly can avoid having to undergo multiple surgeries and may find effective treatment from a young age, allowing them to develop normally. The cornea transplant can then be performed when the child becomes an adult, usually at the age of 18, when the chances of success are much higher and the benefits much greater.


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