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History

Slavik’s Cataract Surgery

Slavik was working in his workshop with an angle grinder when the disc broke and hit him in the eye.

“Right away I felt a severe pain and my eye became dark,” Slavik said. “I was taken to the hospital and there, the doctors told me that my cornea was damaged. I have already had several eye surgeries in Russia. Coming to Armenia was my last hope.”

The surgery was performed a week before we met Slavik. Before the surgery, he had only “light perception,” which gave him just the ability to tell light from dark and the general direction of a light source. But on the day after his surgery, Slavik could see lights and differentiate between objects.

2010 – Blindness by gender:
55% Female, 34% Male

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Myth: Holding a book too close is harmful to your eyes.

Fact: Children and adults who are nearsighted might need to get closer to a book. Doing so does not cause or worsen nearsightedness or any other kinds of eye problem.

Myth: Using a computer, or video display terminal (VDT), is harmful to the eyes.

Fact: Using a VDT may strain or tire your eyes, but it is not harmful. You can get special glasses to wear at the computer to help alleviate eye strain.

Myth: Children will outgrow lazy or crossed eyes.

Fact: Children are not able to outgrow strabismus – the medical term for crossed eyes – on their own but, with help, it can be easily corrected at a younger age. That's why it is important for your child to have an eye exam early, first when your child is an infant and then again by age two.

Shant’s Medical Observership

Twenty-three-year-old Shant Korkigian, a second-year student at the Medical School of the Michigan State University, never thought medicine would be his calling. While one might think that following in his father’s footsteps — a successful physician — would be the obvious choice, Shant says, “I wanted to make my own career selection.”

“I did not want it to be predestined or a field that was pre-determined by my parents,” Shant continues. “I was very hesitant about going to medical school because I wanted it to be my choice. I made the decision to go into the field of medicine only after a number of experiences led me in that direction and I realized that helping people as a physician was something that I really wanted to do for a lifetime.”

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Approximately 14 million Americans aged 12 years and older have self-reported visual impairment defined as distance visual acuity of 20/50 or worse.

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Armenian Government

Armenia is a parliamentary democracy with a strong executive branch. Many political parties have formed and disappeared in Armenia’s first decade of independence, and the parties are often based on the popularity of one leader, or dislike of a current leader. There are also some political parties which formed over 100 years ago, and represented in the Armenian government in 1918-1921, have survived in Diaspora communities and have come back and reestablished themselves in Armenia after independence.

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