September 20, 1999
--Focus of International Ophthalmology Conference--
A Johns Hopkins ophthalmologist will perform the macular degeneration repair surgery he perfected live on the Internet for colleagues attending the international Vitreous Society meeting in Rome.
Taking advantage of advances in telemedicine and continuing medical eduation, Eugene de Juan, M.D., professor of ophthalmology at Johns Hopkins' Wilmer Eye Institute, will demonstrate and discuss the procedure, called macular translocation, at 7:30 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 23, from his operating room in Baltimore. Soon after, he will fly to Rome to continue teaching the course.
The surgery also will be shown in several conference rooms on the Hopkins campus.
Macular translocation is intended for patients who are in the very early stages of macular degeneration, in which abnormal blood vessels grow and bleed underneath the retina. The surgeon moves the most light-sensitive tissue of the retina away from the underlying diseased areas. De Juan has performed more than 200 of the operations.
During the procedure, de Juan pinches the sclera, the white, outer part of the eye, as if it were a hollow rubber ball. He then puts sutures into the side wall of the eye to keep it pinched, shortening its length. This buckles the retina, which lines the inner wall of the eye. De Juan then injects a salty solution into the eye under the retina, causing the retina to "blister" up enough so he can move it slightly without detaching it. The average distance the retina must be moved is about 0.3 to 0.4 millimeters.
To view the surgery, register through Wilmer's continuing medical education site - http://www.wilmer.jhu.edu/cme.htm. Patients wanting more information about the procedure can call 410-427-1128.
LIVE WEBCAST OF EYE SURGERY
Thursday, Sept. 23, 1999
The Johns Hopkins Hospital
601 N. Wolfe St.
To interview de Juan, please call me at 410-955-1534 or send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.