Hi-tech scanner major boost in treatment of eye patients

A NEW scanner is being unveiled today in Bradford to treat the city’s eye patients.

Surgeons at Bradford Royal Infirmary hope the state-of-the-art device will lead to faster assessments and more precise treatments for hundreds of patients.

The hi-tech Heidelberg Retinal Spectralis scanner will be used to diagnose conditions such as wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and also to monitor the progress of patients’ treatment.

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Bosses at Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust have hailed it as a major development for the city for both clinical and research work.

AMD is the most common reason in the UK for people to be registered blind.

Specialists in Bradford treat between 250 to 300 new eye referrals for the disorder every year.

Consultant eye surgeon Faruque Ghanchi said: “The Spectralis scanner will help doctors to evaluate what is going on in a patient’s eye by providing more accurate, real-time microscopic computer images of the retina in seconds, so in an instant this picture of the eye will help surgeons to plan a patient’s treatment and predict individual outcomes better than ever before.

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”The addition of the scanner to the Bradford Royal Infirmary’s eye department will also help the unit’s research team to continue their work in introducing new technology and services to patients locally.

“Put simply, it is one of the finest systems around today and is a significant investment by the foundation trust towards giving Bradford patients the latest and most advanced eye assessments available.”

Bradford has more than 30,000 diabetes sufferers who receive annual screening in the community for diabetic retinopathy.

A number of these patients may go on to suffer from advanced stages of diabetic retinopathy – a condition which can potentially cause blindness – and need referral to hospital specialists.

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Such patients needing specialist care in eye clinics will also benefit from the installation of the new scanner.

Medical director Prof Clive Kay said: “The introduction of Spectralis is an exciting new development for Bradford, both for our clinical and research work, and means that we have a brand new resource which is enhancing, not just our service, but our patient care.”

The eye department in Bradford has been providing treatment to patients suffering from AMD for more than 10 years.

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