Patient stories: treating Honorine, Cameroon, for cataract

Honorine’s cataract was so severe that she could no longer cook or sew. While Honorine still worked, she could barely see the machete she used as a peanut and maize farmer, so was terrified she would hurt herself. That all changed after she underwent sight-saving treatment on our Flying Eye Hospital in Cameroon

Watch: Honorine undergoes treatment on our Flying Eye Hospital

A motorcycle accident in 2015 left the 60-year-old grandmother and farmer with a cataract in her left eye. There were times she would even pass acquaintances by and not notice they were there because she could not see.

Just managing simple daily tasks such as cooking and slicing vegetables made her feel uneasy and she was afraid to go out on to the peanut farm in case she wounded herself while working with a machete. This, coupled with the pain she was in, made life extremely difficult for Honorine.

After struggling with her sight for two years, searching for a solution, it was recommended that she seek treatment at Yaoundé Central Hospital. It just so happened to be the final day that they were registering patients for the Flying Eye Hospital programme. We met Honorine on screening day, and had the chance to hear her story, just before she was about to have life-changing surgery.

Cameroon patient Honorine being screened for cataract

Honorine is first screened by Orbis volunteer surgeon Dr Sil at Yaoundé Central Hospital

On discovering that Orbis would support her treatment, she and her family were so grateful that they wouldn't need to find the 250,000 francs for a routine cataract surgery. And when she heard she was one of the first women to be operated on, she believed it was a ‘miracle’.

Following surgery, both Honorine's vision and life have dramatically, with people who know her commenting that she looks younger and happier. She’s even reading her Bible without her glasses now and working on the peanut farm again with confidence.

Honorine told us that she really appreciates the support our medical teams have given her and hopes that other people just like her can get the treatment they need to save their sight.

In the fight against avoidable blindness every minute matters

Give the gift of sight
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