Laser Pointer Burns Hole In A 9-Year-Old’s Eye

Henrietta Strickland
June 24, 2018

A nine-year-old boy in Greece permanently injured his left eye when he repeatedly gazed into a laser pointer's green beam, doctors say.

A scan soon revealed a large hole in the part of his left retina called the macula, which is crucial for mapping out things like faces and words. The formation of cataract results in blurred vision by making the clear lenses of the eyes cloudy.

The victim's father reportedly purchased the laser pointer as a toy from a street vendor. Androudi, who was one of the doctors who worked on the boy's case, added that the child's injury was especially serious, as the nerves in his eye were completely damaged by the laser burn. Unfortunately, even if the surgery were successful, the little boy would still lose his sight.

The child came in for a check-up with his doctor in Volos, Greece, more than a year after his injury, and complained of some issues seeing.

An eye test revealed the boy's vision to be 20/20 (normal) in his right eye but 20/100 in his left eye, the report said. More than that, the physician noted that, in this particular case, surgery's ineffective, since the laser burned a considerable hole in the macula. The astonishing fact is that even after eighteen months of the damage, there were no changes observed in the boy's vision. Further, Dr. Lee added, "That can leave scar tissue behind and can cause bleeding". The patient can actually get a blind spot right in the middle of the eye.

The sale of laser pointers with more than 5 milliwatts of power is restricted in the US, however the devices are still obtainable.

"The power output, rather than being five milliwatts, can be 10, 50 or even higher", said Gehlbach.

A laser is usually so powerful that is can act like a burn.

A young boy has severely damaged his eye after shining a laser pointer into it. Put simply, it's easier to see green light than red, she explained.

Police have also been given permission to confiscate any lasers found on a person in a public place, search the individual and potentially arrest them. That means no playing with them like they're lightsabers or aiming them in front of cats to get them to chase the little dot.

Lasers are risky as a toy for many reasons.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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