« In ophthalmology, it is essential to devote time to each patient and apply individualised treatment »
Dr Verdaguer is a specialist in the pathology of the cornea, ocular surface and conjunctiva. She performs refractive surgery using Excimer laser, implant of phakic lenses, toric lenses and lenses to correct presbyopia as well as cataract surgery with state-of-the-art technology. Her specialty is one of the best known in ophthalmology. In the past decade, there have been important developments in technology and therapies
Cataracts are one of the age-related ocular alterations with the highest prevalence. Where is the differential value in your intervention?
Clearly, it lies in the personalisation of the treatment. Cataract operations are the most common intervention in ophthalmic surgery, but this should not lead us to any kind of mechanical routine: each patient is unique, and the operation too. Individualised treatment lies in the quality of the intervention, in the refractive results and in patient satisfaction. The fact that the intervention is quick, painless and effective should not make us lower our guard.
Refractive surgery has experienced a notable increase in 20 years, with many centres offering to correct myopia, hypermetropia and astigmatism. What should we bear in mind when we choose a doctor?
There are many centres, the technique has advanced greatly and there are some very experienced doctors, although not everyone works in the same way. For us, a key factor is time. We study the conditioning factors, we perform a personalised diagnosis for each patient and we prioritise safety.
After the age of 50, most of the population suffers from eyestrain. Is there a solution?
Presbyopia results from a loss of elasticity in the crystalline lens, the natural lens of the eye. Surgery includes different techniques depending on age, the calibration necessary and the characteristics of the eye. Each case is assessed from a series of tests that enable us to decide the most appropriate technique for each patient. Although there are many projects in development, currently the only definitive treatment for its correction is removal of the crystalline lens. This can be replaced by a monofocal lens (monovision) or by multifocal lenses (bifocal/trifocal).
In spring, conjunctivitis is one of the most frequent allergies…
That’s right. Allergens such as pollen from trees or grasses, which are more present in spring, cause the eyes to itch. There may also be red eye, tearing, palpebral inflammation, discharge, eye pain and, in severe cases, photophobia and blurred vision. So it is important to identify the agent that has caused the conjunctivitis and avoid contact with it. As for the treatment, it is necessary to see an ophthalmologist when the symptoms appear in order to correctly assess the problem and the degree of severity of the pathology.
What is dry eye syndrome?
It is a very common chronic multifactorial pathology that is characterised by eye discomfort caused by a tear deficit or its poor quality due to dysfunction of Meibomian glands, among other factors. It affects about 30% of the adult population and its incidence increases with age, the menopause, prolonged use of contact lenses, treatment with certain drugs or autoimmune diseases.
How is it treated?
The treatment varies depending on the cause, the degree of dry eye and the patient’s characteristics. When it is a mild or moderate syndrome, correct cleaning of the eyelids, artificial tears and lubricating ointments usually help control dryness and irritation. In severe cases, more specific additional treatments are required, such as anti-inflammatory drugs, topical (or oral) antibiotics or regenerative drops for the ocular surface. For treating Meibomian gland dysfunction we use glandular expression, eyelid microexfoliation or intense pulsed light. The treatments are often complementary.
Recently, a new treatment has been made available...
Yes, this is a regenerative therapy that restores the ocular surface. It consists of a biocompatible eye drop made from the patient's own blood using ENDORET® technology. It involves a complex set of biologic mediators, including growth factors and cytokines that repair damaged tissues. The results are highly satisfactory in stimulating cell proliferation.