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MEDICC Rev. 2012 Jul;14(3):37-40.

Cataract and pterygium surgery results in Venezuelan patients treated in the Misión Milagro program.

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  • 1Dr Salvador Allende General Teaching Hospital, Havana, Cuba.


An intervention to address vision loss was carried out in 2008 in Táchira, Venezuela, by health teams of the joint Cuban-Venezuelan initiative known as Misión Milagro. It included active case identification of patients with ophthalmologic conditions and, where warranted, surgery, followup, rehabilitation and medical discharge. From a universe of 345 patients aged ≥18 years with ophthalmologic conditions found, 210 were selected for cataract or pterygium surgery. Of cataract patients, 55.2% recovered optimal vision within three months after surgery, as did 90.9% of those with pterygium; frequency of complications was 15.4% in cataract patients and 41.7% in pterygium patients. The intervention was considered successful, although many patients' low-income status required premature postoperative return to their jobs and other labors, a factor considered detrimental to optimal recovery.

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