About Retinopathy of Prematurity

World health organization (WHO) has launched ‘VISION 2020’ program for elimination of preventable blindness. Control of childhood blindness is one of the priorities identified as a part of this program. Evidence suggests that one out of every 1000 children is blind in India. Few important causes responsible for blindness in India are corneal scarring mainly due to vitamin A deficiency (26.0%, though reduced now), globe abnormalities (25.0%), cataract (12%) and retinal disorders (21.0%).
Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) is a vascular proliferative retinopathy seen in low birth weight premature infants. It is one of the leading causes of avoidable severe visual disability and childhood blindness worldwide. With increasing survival of infants due to the advancements in paediatric neonatology care, there is increase in the incidence of ROP in India and in low and middle income countries10-12. It is slowly emerging as an epidemic.
ROP has wide spectrum of presentation, ranging from mild transient changes, which regresses spontaneously, to more chronic and severe form like retinal detachment and scarring which are irreversible and can lead to total blindness.
Timely screening and early treatment, when needed, can prevent the progression of ROP to advanced stage in majority of these neonates. Management of ROP has evolved over last 2 -3 decades. Though surgery can be performed in the advanced stages of ROP, generally the overall visual prognosis is poor. Hence it is important to implement an effective screening program with appropriate referral and management protocol at the primary level. All ophthalmologists, neonatologists, obstetricians and other healthcare professionals must be made aware of ROP and its sight threatening potential.

About the conference

Retina Summit is an annual meeting for retina specialists, an initiative of Shri Bhagwan Mahavir Vitreoretinal Services, Sankara Nethralaya Chennai, held in the month of July every year. The conference is unique in having a focussed theme for every meeting. Here we discuss and share the scientific knowledge from the basics to recent advances in diagnosing and managing vitreoretinal disorders. The 6th annual meeting, ‘Retina Summit 2024’, would focus on “Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP)”. The Vitreoretinal department at Sankara Nethralaya is happy to join hands with Indian ROP society (iROP) as a part of its 8th Annual iROP Society meeting. The purpose of this conference is to bring together the retina specialists practicing in India and around the world to share their knowledge on this important and challenging topic of preventable childhood blindness.
Chennai is the biggest city in South India and the capital of Tamil Nadu. It is located on the Coromandel Coast, off the Bay of Bengal. It is known for its industrial, educational, cultural, commercial interests and traditional food. Chennai has tropical climate and average temperature is around 36 degrees in July.
Choosing the venue at our own Sankara Nethralaya premises, would be an opportunity to many of the delegates to visit ‘The temple of eye’ and also a home-coming for many of our alumnus.

Message from the Organising Desk

On behalf of the Retina Summit 2024, we would like to invite you all to the 6th Retina Summit 2024, to be held jointly in association with 8th annual meeting of iROP Society, at Sankara Nethralaya, Chennai, Tamilnadu from 11th -13th July 2024. We would like to thank Prof. Rajavardhan Azad, President and Dr Anand Vinekar, Hon Secretary, iROP Society, for accepting our request to jointly host the Retina summit 2024 and the annual iROP meeting in Chennai.
The conference will begin with preconference awareness programme and hands-on workshop on 11th Thursday, followed by one and half days of main scientific deliberations spread on 12th and 13th July’24. The meeting would be focussing on in-depth scopes, challenges, nuances in medical management and surgical management including visual rehabilitation and legal issues related to ROP. The esteemed faculty is chosen based on their scientific contributions and expertise in the field. The purpose of the meeting is to provide a forum for ophthalmologists, neonatologists, anaesthesiologists, other healthcare providers and legal experts to share their knowledge and experience about tackling ROP. Undoubtedly the conference will provide a stimulating platform for knowledge sharing and keeping abreast of challenges faced by the retina specialists and ophthalmologists in tackling this globally important issue.
With mutual interaction, the meeting will be a great learning feast for all the practicing and budding ROP surgeons. Participants will be enriched with advanced knowledge to fight against this preventable disease called ‘ROP’.
We look forward to meeting you all in Chennai on 11, 12 and 13th July 2024.

With Best Regards,
The team
Retina Summit 2024

Message from iROP President

Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP) was little known before 90s and only handful of centres in India practiced management that too without laid down protocols. Global recognition and recommendations were few and any uniform / universal guidelines or standardisation were lacking.
Until the arrival of ICROP-1 that was 83-87,KAP of ROP was hazy and unclear .With following years setting in awareness about ROP and its devastating outcome poured in from different parts of country. Between 1990 and 2000 few papers appeared in literature and mostly followed the iCROP recommendations. As a result awareness regarding its potential either to prevent or proceed to blindness was well known by then.
Dr RP Centre AIIMS New Delhi, Sankara Nethralaya Chennai, Aravind eye hospital Madurai and later LV Prasad Hyderabad and PGI Chandigarh were the ones which started working in this area. Whole country was stormed with awareness workshop with support from WHO, MOH FW, Sight Savers and Orbis international between 2000- 2011 as a result of which ROP was included in National Program for prevention of blindness. Around 2011-2013 MOHFW GOI realised the importance of child hood blindness and with me as an advisor to blindness program created a separate task force on ROP under my chairmanship.
Task force realised the needs of developing a protocol for screening and timely treatment for the entire country which eventually they did. Later ROP took a dip with its tie up with RBSK program of MOHFW of GOI.Having realised the need for a robust ROP on a bigger scale wherein all Private, Public and Government partners can participate in this public health program, In the year 2016 Indian ROP society was conceptualised and formed with five - six ophthalmologist in Bangalore under my leadership. We have taken up this cause not only at national level but also at international level with formation of a body named as World ROP Council (WROP) where I was elected as President. IROP is working hard in organising annual meet so far 5 such barring covid years. Even in covid years we published screening and management guidelines specifically for covid days.
The society is involved in quality presentation, new innovations and interesting case reports that forms the basis of IROP activities. Besides these we are also doing zonal workshop to strengthen our awareness programs with Govt Ophthalmologist training being part of it.
Involvement of public and paramedical is also taken up in our ROP ambassador program which add to our awareness with deeper penetration in the society.
Now the membership has gone up to 300 plus and all members are keenly involved in all academic activities. Many publication in national and international journal are coming up due to our members sharing their knowledge and practice .The society is doing yeoman service and we hope we will achieve the mission statement of IROP ie no child would go blind due to ROP.
This meeting is special one as we are entering in to our sixth annual meet and more so with Sankara Nethralaya too having same theme of ROP for this year in Chennai. We look forward to all our members of IROP to join this meeting and enlighten the attendees with their latest experiences and experiments.

Wishing all a very best year ahead,
yours sincerely,

Rajvardhan Azad
President IROP