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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 33  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 390-391

Comment on “the champion runner who became the forerunner in ophthalmic surgery training”

Department of Ophthalmology, Sai Darshan Eye and ENT Clinic, Kozhikode, Kerala, India

Date of Submission29-Aug-2021
Date of Decision29-Aug-2021
Date of Acceptance30-Aug-2021
Date of Web Publication08-Dec-2021

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Vinodkumar Nalapat Venugopal
Sai Darshan Eye and ENT Clinic, 19/1053A, Dr. P. B. Menon Road, Chalapuram, Kozhikode - 673 002, Kerala
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/kjo.kjo_188_21

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How to cite this article:
Venugopal VN. Comment on “the champion runner who became the forerunner in ophthalmic surgery training”. Kerala J Ophthalmol 2021;33:390-1

How to cite this URL:
Venugopal VN. Comment on “the champion runner who became the forerunner in ophthalmic surgery training”. Kerala J Ophthalmol [serial online] 2021 [cited 2022 Jan 19];33:390-1. Available from: http://www.kjophthal.com/text.asp?2021/33/3/390/331935

Dear Sir,

I happened to read the very informative article by John C B, titled “The champion runner who became the forerunner in ophthalmic surgery training,” published in the Kerala Journal Of Ophthalmology,[1] and I would like to congratulate the author for highlighting another aspect of the great surgeon Dr. H. B Stallard. In this context, I would like to narrate a true incident that happened in 1959, which was described to me by my Grandfather, Dr. P. B. Menon, L. O, the first qualified Ophthalmologist of Kozhikode, Kerala, and the Malabar region.

Sri K. P. Kesava Menon was one of the Founders of Mathrubhumi Printing and Publishing Company and was also its Managing Editor. He was a high myope. My Grandfather, Dr. P. B. Menon was his close friend and also his Eye Specialist. In 1959, Sri. KPK Menon developed bilateral cataract, and he approached my grandfather for deteriorating vision. Dr. Menon, after a thorough examination with Torch and Direct ophthalmoscope, was of the opinion that there was a retinal detachment affecting one quadrant, and he made a note of it in his case records. Since there was no facility in Kozhikode during that period to tackle such complex cases and Sri KPK Menon wanted the best treatment possible, Dr. Menon fixed an appointment with Dr. H B Stallard at Moorefields Eye Hospital, London.

On meeting Dr. Stallard, Dr. Menon gave the case reports to him, and he examined Sri KPK Menon and cataract surgery was done very soon in one eye. It was Intracapsular cataract extraction. On the first postoperative examination, there was no vision improvement and Dr. Stallard noticed a Total Retinal Detachment. It was then that Dr. Stallard went through the notes written by Dr. Menon, and it was then that he noticed the mention of a Retinal detachment in one quadrant. He came in a hurry to Dr. Menon, who was in the waiting area, and said: “I apologise to you Dr. Menon, I didn't go through your clinical notes completely. He has a total RD. How did you make out the RD? “Dr. Menon replied that he used the torch light to check the pupillary reactions and checked the Projection and did a dilated fundus examination using the direct ophthalmoscope and assumed that there was a retinal detachment in one quadrant. Dr. Stallard repeated his apology thrice. He then asked Dr. Menon,” Shall we change Horses? 'and he himself made arrangements to send Mr. KPK Menon to Dr. Shapland in France who did the RD surgery. But unfortunately, Mr. KPK. Menon did not regain vision. Later, He developed RD in his other eye too and he became bilaterally blind.

This incident highlights the magnanimity of Dr. Stallard, the other facet of a great athlete, author, and an ophthalmic surgeon par excellence.


The author would like to thank Prof. Dr. K. B. Venugopal, son of Dr. P. B. Menon for his valuable inputs.

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Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

  References Top

John CB. The champion runner who became the forerunner in ophthalmic surgery training. Kerala J Ophthalmol 2021;33:91-4.  Back to cited text no. 1
  [Full text]  


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