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Dr. Emilio iglesias Touriño

- Doctor in Medicine and Surgery from the University of Santiago de Compostela 1972-1978.
- Specialist in Ophthalmology from the Barraquer Clinic in Barcelona.
- PhD in Medicine and Surgery from the University of Santiago de Compostela.
- Associate Doctor at the Barraquer Clinic, anterior segment, cornea transplant and cataract surgery unit.
- Head of resident surgeons at the Instituto Barraquer.
- Associate Doctor at the CHUO ophthalmology service.
- Head of the ophthalmology unit at the El Carmen Medical Centre.
- 300 operations per year on average in my specialization.
- Member of the Spanish Ophthalmology society.
- Member of the Spanish SECOIR Society.
- Member of the European Ophthalmology Society.
- Member of the American Ophthalmology Society and ASCRS.


The most common procedure used to extract cataracts is called phacoemulsification. After making a small incision on the edge of the cornea (the front part of the eye), the ophthalmologist inserts an small instrument that uses high-frequency ultrasound, which breaks down the opaque cataract and carefully sucks it out. After the opaque cataract has been removed, the surgeon then replaces it with an intraocular lens (IOL). The new transparent lens allows light through to the retina and focuses appropriately. The IOL will become a permanent part of the eye. In most cases, the IOL is placed behind the iris, the coloured part of the eye, and is called a posterior chamber lens. Sometimes, the intraocular lens has to be placed in front of the iris. This lens is called an anterior chamber lens. Once the intraocular lens is in place, the surgeon closes the incision. This may or may not require stitches. After surgery, protection is placed over the eye (a patch). The procedure is done on an outpatient basis and does not need a stay in hospital.


There are two different way of carrying out this surgery:

Laser: This eye surgery permanently changes the shape of the cornea (the transparent cover on the front of the eye). It is done to improve vision and reduce a person’s need to wear glasses or contact lenses. The laser used is called a LASIK. The LASIK uses an excimer laser (an ultraviolet one) to extract a small amount of the corneal tissue. This gives the cornea a new shape which means that light rays are sharply focussed on the retina. The LASIK makes the cornea thinner. LASIK surgery is done on an outpatient basis and takes about ten or fifteen minutes for each eye. The only anesthetic is by eye drops that numb the surface of the eye. The procedure is carried out while the patient is awake, but they are given some medicine to be more relaxed. LASIC surgery can be carried out on one or both eyes in the same session. It does not require a stay in hospital.

Lens surgery: ICL lenses are the most effective alternative for treating short-sightedness, astigmatisms and long-sightedness when LASIK treatment is not advisable in the following cases: dry eyes, large pupils, thin corneas, alterations in the corneal morphology. ICL lenses are made from Collamer®, a substance that is tolerated perfectly by the eye. They are soft and small and can therefore be injected into the eye without pain, in just a few seconds through a very small incision in the cornea. Once the ICL lens has been injected it unfolds to fit in position in front of the eye’s lens and behind the iris. Once inside the eye, the lens is invisible and cannot be felt at all. The ICL lens is designed to remain within the eye indefinitely. The advantage is that it can be removed when necessary as it does not damage the structure of the eye. ICL lens implantation takes about 15 minutes per eye and is carried out on an outpatient basis that does not require a hospital stay.


Trabeculectomy: This is normally carried out under local anesthetic. The ophthalmologist (surgeon) cuts a layer in the white of the eye (sclera), removes a piece of trabecular meshwork and sews up the layer. This creates a new opening (a bubble of liquid or blister in the outer part of the eye) through which the liquid (aqueous humour) flows and enters the blood stream. Surgery is usually carried out on an outpatient basis. One eye is treated at a time, generally with four to six weeks between each visit.


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