Star-shaped cataracts in eyes of man after electric shock

Jan. 25, 2014 at 11:04 PM
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SAN DIEGO, Jan. 26 (UPI) -- A California electrician developed star-shaped cataracts in his eyes after 14,000 volts of electricity passed through his body, his doctor says.

Dr. Robert S. Korn of the University of California, San Diego, said the 42-year-old electrician's left shoulder came into contact with 14,000 volts of electricity, and an electric current passed through his entire body, including the optic nerve -- the nerve that connects the back of the eye to the brain, LiveScience reported.

The current and voltage damaged the optic nerve as it passed through it, Korn said.

Four months after the injury, the patient underwent cataract surgery, which was followed by improvement in visual acuity to 20/70 in the right eye and 20/400 in the left eye.

Two years after the injury, a retinal detachment developed in the left eye, and the patient was treated. At a 10-year follow-up visit, the patient's visual acuity was 20/100 in the right eye, but in the left eye he could only count fingers.

Although the man was legally blind, he was able to read with the use of low-vision aids and was able to independently commute on public transportation, Korn said.

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