Raghav Chadha

Raghav Chadha’s Eye Surgery Explained

Recently, it has been reported that popular Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader and MP Raghav Chadha, underwent a serious eye surgery during his visit to London. The surgery, known as vitrectomy, was apparently necessary to reduce Mr. Chadha’s risk of losing his eyesight.

Recounting on the same incident, Saurabh Bharadwaj, the Health Minister of Delhi, stated that Mr. Chadha’s condition was critical and that he needed immediate medical attention due to the impending concerns of blindness. He further assured that Mr. Chadha will soon return to his political activities in India after his recovery, considering the current election campaign.

According to reports, Mr. Chadha went through a vitrectomy to prevent retinal detachment, which was made worse by a hole in one of his retinas. Mr. Chadha’s eyesight is allegedly much better and the early signs of recovery are promising, thanks to the successful completion of the surgery.

The risk of retinal detachment is usually increased by myopia or near-sightedness. Reflecting on Raghav Chadha’s eye condition, Dr. Amit Jain, a Retina Specialist at Fortis Hospital, Mulund, said “The risk of developing a retinal detachment is 5-6 times greater in people with high myopia (>6D of refractive error) compared to those with low myopia (<3D). People with high myopia have longer eyes (axial elongation), which means that the retina is more stretched and thus prone to retinal tears. In addition, myopic eyes have a degenerate/ liquified vitreous that is more likely to separate from the retina increasing the traction on thin retina and subsequent risk of retinal tears. It is important to make patients aware of these potentially sight-threatening conditions and that their risk appears to be proportionate to their degree of myopia.” (Source: Financial Express.com)

Dr. Jain further claims that retinal detachment can occur in people belonging to any age group. He adds, “One should contact an eye specialist immediately if they see flashes of lights (usually seen in dim light) or floaters, or if they experience visual field loss (curtain like shadow falling in front of their eyes). In addition, regular eye exams are crucial for detecting any changes in the retina early on.” (Source: Financial Express.com)

Surgical procedure is the primary treatment required for retinal detachment. Sometimes the finest outcome comes from a combination of treatments, he said.

Dr. Uma Malliah, Senior Consultant, Ophthalmology, Indraprastha Apollo Hospital who spoke with Financial Express.com said that vitrectomy is usually an outpatient treatment carried out under local or general anesthesia. He further stated, “Recovery time varies depending on the specific condition being treated, but most patients experience improved vision within a few weeks or months after the surgery.”

In order to monitor the recovery process and manage any probable issues, it’s critical to adhere to the surgeon’s post-operative instructions and to follow-up on scheduled appointments, he added.

For those of you who are wondering what vitrectomy is and how it is performed, here’s a quick glance at the procedure:

What is vitrectomy?

Vitrectomy, as described by medical experts, is mainly a surgical treatment aimed at managing a variety of conditions affecting the retina and the vitreous fluid in the eye. The main aim of this surgery is to remove the vitreous fluid from the eyeball. In addition, it can also be used to repair your retina or macula, and eliminate any cloudy or debris-filled fluid from the eye.

The surgeon later fixes the retina after removing the vitreous during the procedure. The vitreous fluid may be substituted by the surgeon with silicone oil, sterile salt water or a gas bubble.

Senior consultant and vitreoretinal specialist at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Dr. Tinku Bali further elaborated on the use of this surgery to address conditions such as macular holes, retinal detachment, vitreous hemorrhage (bleeding within the eye), scar tissue, and issues with the membranes on the retina’s surface. It can also aid in managing eye infections and side effects following cataract surgery.

“During the procedure, small openings are made in the white part (sclera) of the eye, through which specialized micro-instruments are inserted. The vitreous jelly is then removed and cut out, providing access to the retina’s surface. In cases of retinal detachment, fluid is removed from behind the retina, while blood or scar tissue can be removed from in front of it,” Dr. Bali added. (Source: Financial Express.com)

Why is vitrectomy performed?

Vitrectomy is usually recommended if you have eye problems that:

  • Makes your vitreous become hazy or cloudy. This is often caused by vitreous hemorrhage or eye bleeding.
  • Causes your retina to be pulled on or damaged.
  • Is difficult to diagnose.
  • Requires a therapeutic device or medical administration.


When is vitrectomy performed?

Vitrectomy is performed for various eye conditions such as:

  • Severe eye injury
  • Endophthalmitis
  • Diabetic retinopathy with bleeding or scar tissue disturbing the retina or vitreous fluid
  • Some types of retinal detachment
  • Macular holes
  • Macular puckers
  • Specific complications during cataract surgery


What are the complications associated with vitrectomy?

It is quite known that surgical procedures do not come without any complications. Similarly, the surgical procedure of vitrectomy also involves certain risks such as:

  • Developing an infection
  • Bleeding
  • Retinal detachments and ruptures
  • Either getting a cataract that doesn’t already exist or having a current one develop faster
  • Having your eye pressure either low or high
  • Blindness or loss of eyesight in rare instances


Commenting on the complications of vitrectomy, Dr. Bali states that post-surgery, outcomes are usually good and the incidence of complications are typically low.

She further explained, “Vitrectomy is routinely performed in medical centers across India. Following the removal of the vitreous jelly, it can be replaced with air, gas, or, in specific situations, silicone oil. Over time, the jelly does not regenerate, but the eye secretes a fluid called aqueous humour, which takes its place.” (Source: Financial Express.com)

In addition, she also mentioned that the modern vitrectomy surgery tends to be highly specialized, for which it employs tiny devices and frequently results in suture-free wounds that tends to seal on its own. This further allows for faster patient recovery with great outcomes.

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