Tenn. woman undergoes break through eye surgery in Nashville - WKRN News 2

Tenn. woman undergoes break through eye surgery in Nashville

Posted: Updated: Jan 18, 2013 05:10 PM

A Tennessee woman is one of the first people in the state to undergo a break through surgery to treat a painful eye disease.

On Friday, Dr. Ming Wang, performed the Cross-Linking procedure on 20-year-old patient Haley Offield.

Offield suffers from an eye disease called keratoconus. The disorder affects one in every 200 Americans.

"Keratoconus is a genetic eye disease due to the weakening of the cornea the patient has progressive sight loss," explained Dr. Wang.

Due to the disease, Offield told Nashville's News 2 her eye sight has deteriorated quickly and that she is no longer able to drive or read a book and heavily relies on her family.

"It gets a little tough because they have their own life that they have to attend to," she said, adding, "I was always worried that I would go to bed one night and not be able to see anymore because it was so rapid."

Before the Cross-Linking procedure there was not any effective forms of treatment for keratoconus.

"The goal of the Cross-Linking procedure is to stabilize the cornea preserving patient's sight and in some cases, can improve patient's sight as well," Dr. Wang explained.

He continued, "We are able to strengthen the cornea, improving patient's sight and avoiding risking cornea transplantation."

Currently Dr. Wang, of the Wang Vision 3D Cataract and Lasik Center, is the only doctor in the state of Tennessee who has been selected to participate in the clinical trial Cross-Linking treatment.

On Friday, Offield became one of the first patients to go through the Cross-Linking procedure.

"It is exciting to be able to say that a little small town girl is the first step to a new future to a lot of people," she said.

Offield told Nashville's News 2 she is hopeful the procedure will help her regain her independence along with her vision.

It will take three to six months for Offield to heal from the procedure.

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