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Watch as Rose sees herself for the first time after cataract surgery

October 2015

NOTE: This article is more than five years old, but may still be relevant. For more recent content, see our latest stories from the field.

On Channel 4’s Unreported World: The Fight for Sight, TV presenter and wheelchair basketball player Ade Adepitan followed Rose’s journey as her vision was restored.

Rose is 14 years old and has been blind since she was a baby. She has always wanted to go to school with her friends and learn how to read and write, but hadn’t been able to until a Sightsavers outreach clinic visited the area of Malawi where Rose lives.

Rose was taken to the clinic by her stepfather, where her eyes were examined by Rex Bwanausi, an ophthalmic clinical officer. Although Rose was almost 97 per cent blind, her pupils reacted to the light he shined in them, which suggested a cataract operation would help to improve her sight.

After an operation at the Queen Elizabeth Central hospital, Rose looked into a mirror, smiling and laughing at what she saw for the first time. She exclaimed: “Is that my shirt?” before telling everyone: “I need a haircut!”

See what the world looks like to a child with cataracts

 

Surgical staff perform a cataract operation.

Cataract surgery in one minute

During a trip to Bangladesh, we filmed a time-lapse video of a Sightsavers cataract operation, which usually takes 10 to 20 minutes. Our video is just over a minute long.

Watch the time-lapse

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