A Searing Interview

michael-smile“In my opinion vision problems are not so much a medical mystery as they are a social problem.”  What does Michael Lievens mean by that?  The beautiful smile on his face heralds emerging success against improbable odds.  Read this penetrating and deeply moving interview conducted with Michael by Robert Nurisio, COVT, and share it with as many people as you possibly can. It is a message that some strabismus surgeons would love to suppress.

6 thoughts on “A Searing Interview

  1. It’s interesting to note Michael’s insight into his handedness. In retrospect, our six-year-old anisometropic amblyope displayed similar ambiguity.
    Michael’s ambivalence between taking ownership for his affliction and his apparent disposition to cast himself as victim is understandable, especially for a Western youth. I hope that the former predominates as he moves forward. The VT community might benefit from refraining from hyperbolic expressions and explanations of the status quo, nature, or nurture.

    • Which is the hyperbole, Peter? The VT community sharing the deep emotional toll that such conditions have on patents into adulthood, or the ongoing campaing by the non-VT community to advise patients that there’s nothing else to be done for their condition and to see a psychiatrist to get over their vision obsession?

  2. Floyd, the nature of medicine is such that lives can be ruined through even the most benevolent and well-meaning attempts at ‘fixing’ things. We are all, as doctors, potentially guilty of this. The comment “In my opinion vision problems are not so much a medical mystery as they are a social problem” speaks broadly, but in particular to the need to address public awareness and professional education. One more reason to focus on science, research, and kind and gentle reminders to other professionals when their dogma outpaces their clinical wisdom. Wonderful piece, Robert N. Thanks again for spreading the story, Len. It’s the personal side of things combined with science that will ultimately win over public opinion.

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