Hyderabad: Quacks in the city are promising an effective treatment for diabetic retinopathy. Doctors practising modern medicine are dealing with patients who are reporting severe complications and also irreversible blindness as a consequence of this unscientific treatment.
Diabetic retinopathy affects those with diabetes and is cannot be detected easily. Those suffering from diabetes for a very long time must get their eyes checked annually. Vision reduces from the sides and it is only when a person cannot see from the front that he or she realises there is a problem.
Most patients who suffer from this condition look to alternative medications to restore their vision. They often fall into the hands of quacks who make tall claims and assure miracle cures, but protect themselves by saying there is no guarantee that it will work for all.
Fake Ayurvedic and herbal clinics found in Ameerpet, Yousufguda, Abids and also near Secunderabad station may offer this treatment.
Dr P. Tandava Krishnan, senior consultant of vitreo retinal services at Maxiv-ision Super Speciality Hospital, says that when patients are told that they will require laser treatment or surgery they do not come back.
“These patients then come after two to three years after trying other treatments. They say they were given tablets and powder packets and were assured that the vision will be restored. But their vision is very low and that is why they come back to us. There is nothing that we can do with low vision as this condition is a slow but irreversible process.”
Every month eye clinics see two to three patients with these complaints. But doctors are not willing to complain to the Medical Council. Dr Kulashekar Rao, retired ophthalmologist from Gandhi Hospital, explains why.
“The scope of complaint is limited as doctors are scared of being targeted by quacks. A complaint when registered even with the council leads to inquiry. The drug department is involved. Past experiences have shown that the complainant doctor is targeted by these quacks. Due to this, we have stopped complaining,” he said.
Dr Rao added that “Diabetes retinopathy is a recent and new field which quacks are venturing into. Earlier they claimed they could help people get rid of their spectacles and vision can be restored. Hence every time a new disease is experimented with and gullible people fooled.”
The quacks advertise on local TV channels and, of late, upload videos on social media. Doctors say people don’t accept they have the disease and they also lack understanding of how it can be treated....