Hello, I am Praveen a neonatologist at NCRI Neonatal Network. Today I am going to talk about a condition called retinopathy of prematurity or in short ROP. Retina is the back part of the eye containing a clear tissue allowing the light rays to pass through and help us in our vision. In some infants who are born very premature, this clear tissue is occupied by proliferating blood vessels. This will lead to lack of vision or blindness.
The reason for developing ROP could be because of the prematurity itself or use of oxygen for a longer term. The babies who are at risk of developing this condition need regular screening. The screening is done by specialist who are trained in ROP. They do screening from anywhere between four to eight weeks of age. At weekly intervals generally the screening is done. As soon as they see that the blood vessels are encroaching the area where the vision will be impaired, they might decide to treat the infant. The treatment initially might be by the way of laser therapy, which will not hurt the infant or instillations of some medicines into the back of the eye or very rarely even surgery might be required. Since the consequences of ROP can be blindness, a regular screening and treatment will be required to prevent the complications.
Team Ovum Hospitals