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More than 36,000 people screened at diabetic retinopathy camp

Staff Reporter
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As many as 150 camps were held across Coimbatore, Tirupur, and The Nilgiris

Guinness attempt:A woman giving blood sample for blood glucose level test at a special camp conducted by the Aravind Eye Hospital, Lions Club International 324-B1, and Dr.Rajendran's Diabetes Centre at the Coimbatore Railway Junction on Saturday. - Photo: K. Ananthan
Guinness attempt:A woman giving blood sample for blood glucose level test at a special camp conducted by the Aravind Eye Hospital, Lions Club International 324-B1, and Dr.Rajendran's Diabetes Centre at the Coimbatore Railway Junction on Saturday. - Photo: K. Ananthan

In case of most health problems, people will approach doctors as soon as the initial symptoms set in.

However, there are few problems such as diabetic retinopathy that inflict serious damage without any symptoms. A complication arising from diabetes, it damages the retina and can eventually lead to complete blindness.

“Diabetic retinopathy is often completely symptom-less until the last stage when it might be too late to save the vision. A lot of awareness has to be created on this subject in India, which has more diabetes patients than any other country,” says V. Narendran, Chief Medical Officer of Aravind Eye Hospitals.

Objective

Towards this objective, the Aravind Eye Hospital, Coimbatore, Lions Club International – District 324-B1 and Dr. Rajendran’s Diabetes Centre conducted 150 camps across Coimbatore, Tirupur and the Nilgiris on Saturday in which 36,200 people were screened for diabetes, free of cost.

The camps were held in places of public congregation such as Gandhipuram Bus Stand and Coimbatore Railway Junction.

Those found to have diabetes were asked to come to one of the three centres on November 17 (Sunday) to screen for diabetic retinopathy: Dr. Rajendran’s Diabetes Centre on Tiruchi Road, Lion’s building on Kumaran Road in Tirupur and Lions Building on Palakkad Road near Pollachi.

“We needed no counselling of any sort. Many people jumped at the opportunity to ascertain their sugar levels at the camps,” added Dr. Narendran.

The only defence against diabetic retinopathy was to undergo frequent eye check-ups. Diabetic patients must undergo an eye check at least once every three to six months.

Around 300 nurses and technicians from GKNM Hospital, Ramakrishna Hospital, KMCH, Siva Paramedical College and RVS Nursing College helped conduct the programme along with over 1,000 support staff and volunteers.

World record attempt

According to a press release, this was also an attempt to set the new Guinness World Record for the most blood glucose level tests taken in eight hours. The previous record was set by Taif University in Saudi Arabia when 9,735 blood glucose tests were conducted.

The Hindu is the media partner for the event.

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