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News

Woman goes to court for botched laser eye treatment

13/02/2018By Matthew Woodley
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An Irishwoman now living in Australia is suing an optical clinic over LASIK surgery that she says left her “essentially functionally blind.”

Ms Sarah Roche is before the High Court in Ireland seeking damages from Dublin-based Optical Express and its ophthalmic surgeon Dr Frank Lavery. According to a report in The Independent, Roche should never have undergone the 2007 wavefront LASIK surgery due to a thin cornea and a history of progressive myopia.

Roche has claimed she wasn’t advised of the risks involved and that scans were either not performed or properly analysed. As a result of the damage, Roche says she is essentially blind except for when she wears uncomfortable, customised contact lenses that can only be worn for up to eight hours.

The case was heard by Justice Kevin Cross of the High Court against Lavery and Optical Express, who both denied the claims made by Roche and have already submitted their full defences.

Roche’s lawyer Oonagh McCrann told the court extensive discovery was sought, but the defence was unable to find the scan results. Meanwhile, the defence disputed Roche’s claims of attending all post-operative appointments and reviews.

The patient also claimed she never signed a consent form for the laser treatment and could not recall being informed about the risks of the procedure.

According to McCrann, the procedure was recommended to Roche and she was initially happy with how it turned out. It was only after travelling to Australia in 2008 and in 2012 started to notice her sight was deteriorating.

Whilst in Australia, Roche was referred to an eye specialist who diagnosed her with Ectasia secondary to LASIK treatment. She was advised to undergo treatment using collagen cross linking on both eyes to stop her eyesight from deteriorating.

The trial is scheduled to last three weeks.

AFT Pharmaceuticals
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