The Windhoek Eye Institute offers the following services.




In cataracts, there is a build up of protein in the lens of the eye which makes it cloudy. This prevents light from passing clearly through the lens, thereby causing loss of vision. Advancing age is a primary reason for cataracts. With age, protein in the lens turns opaque. Other causes of cataracts are metabolic disorders such as diabetes, excessive exposure to sunlight, lifestyle disorders like heavy alcohol consumption and smoking. Injury to the eye can also lead to the clouding of the lens.

Treatment of Cataract

Cataract forms, surgery are the only way to treat it. During cataract surgery, the surgeon removes the clouded lens and puts an Intra Ocular Lens (IOL) in your eye. Your vision will be as good as pre-cataract days, though you may need to wear glasses. Over the years, cataract surgery has moved from vision restorative to refractive surgery, reducing the need for glasses. The best cataract treatment requires the combination of expertise of experienced doctors and the latest technology working together. Windhoek Eye Institute is considered to be one of the leading hospitals in Namibia for cataract surgery. The hospital is fully equipped with trained eye specialists for treating patients.

Micro Incision Cataract Surgery

Over the years the size of corneal incision made during cataract surgery has considerably reduced leading to an improved visual outcome & quicker post procedure recovery for the patient.
  • Requires a very small incision of about 2mm
  • Cataract is emulsified into small pieces by phacoemulsification and foldable IOL is implanted
  • Walk-in, Walk-out procedures
  • Stitchless, bloodless, painless surgery
  • Quick healing and post-operative recovery


  • Requires a small incision of 3.2mm
  • Stitchless surgery
  • Cataract is emulsified and removed using an ultrasonic phacoemulsification probe
  • Foldable IOL is implanted


Beware of Glaucoma – A silent thief of vision

Glaucoma or ‘Kala Motia’ is a condition wherein an increased intraocular pressure damages the optic nerve thereby affecting vision. Glaucoma is a disease of the eye that slowly and painlessly takes away your sight. That's the reason it is called the ‘Silent Thief of Sight’.

There is no proven way to cure glaucoma or reverse the loss of vision which has already been effected. Regular eye examination is the key to help detect this disease in its early stages and preserve healthy vision.

At Windhoek Eye Institute, with our team of super specialist and advanced state-of-the-art equipment, we are fully geared not only to detect early stages of Glaucoma but also its treatment and surgical management.

Since most people with glaucoma have no early symptoms or pain, it is important to see your eye doctor regularly so that it can be diagnosed early and glaucoma treatment can be done and irreversible sight loss can be prevented. If you are over 40 years of age and have a family history of glaucoma, you should have a complete eye exam with an eye doctor at a glaucoma treatment hospital after every one to two years.

A fluid known as aqueous nourishes the front part of the eye. In the normal eye, the rate of production of aqueous matches the rate of its drainage, thereby maintaining optimal pressure inside the eye. With age, disease, trauma, or other factors, the channels carrying this fluid may get blocked, increasing the pressure inside the eye. This increased pressure damages the optic nerve, which is the conduit of visual messages to the brain. Working silently, glaucoma damages the outer or peripheral vision first while maintaining the central vision and if not treated in time it may lead to loss of central vision blindness.

Glaucoma is also called the Silent Thief of Sight because in the early stage of the disease, there may be no symptoms. By the time glaucoma is detected, the patient has already suffered extensive peripheral vision damage which can no longer be restored. The statistics reveal that by the time people realize that something is amiss and consult a doctor for glaucoma treatment, 90% of them have lost half of their vision. It comes so slowly that it goes unnoticed in most people. Worldwide, it is the leading cause of irreversible blindness.

Early detection is the key to preserving vision. Once detected, glaucoma can be controlled by medicines (eye drops) or surgery to prevent further vision loss. This can only be done through disciplined and regular glaucoma treatment from an eye specialist. The treatment of Glaucoma is life-long. Glaucoma treatment may include management, surgical management or management by lasers.

Recent Advances in Glaucoma Management

In recent times, there have been a number of advancements in glaucoma management. We now have more sophisticated machines which are able to detect Glaucoma at a very early stage, when no damage to the eyes has occurred, and this helps in starting the glaucoma treatment early and preventing the onset of any possible damage to the eye.

The availability of superior anti glaucoma eye drops has also helped a lot. Newer formulations in medications have also been introduced lately thereby creating a wider choice of treatment options for the ophthalmologist.

The management of glaucoma by lasers has also seen the ushering in of newer technology where accurate angle closure can be promptly dealt with, even when the conventional technique of making a hole by YAG laser does not yield desired results. Apart from the above-mentioned breakthroughs, the Windhoek Eye Istitute also possesses a number of new techniques in glaucoma surgery. These include planting the glaucoma filtration device (for controlled filtration), new kinds of valves and use of sophisticated vitreoretinal techniques to help in conducting complicated glaucoma procedures. These make Windhoek Eye Institute the preferred destination for glaucoma treatment in Windhoek.

The introduction of sophisticated techniques for glaucoma treatment provides tremendous hope for the future of comprehensive medical and surgical management of glaucoma.

The goal of glaucoma treatment is to lower pressure in the eye thereby reducing the damage to the optic nerve. To treat your condition, doctor may choose to either lower the eye pressure through medicated eye drops, or improve the drainage of fluid in the eye or lower the amount of the fluid produced in the eye.


Retina & Uvea services

Let diabetes not affect your eyes

Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetes is a leading cause of blindness in the world. It may lead to frequent fluctuations, floaters and spots in your vision; pain pressure or constant redness of the eye, cataract in young age etc. The most significant of Diabetes in eyes is Diabetic Retinopathy.

Treatment options for Diabetic Retinopathy include Laser photocoagulation, Intravitreal injections and Victrectomy. Equipped with the latest technology and vast diagnostic and surgical experience, the Retina Department of Excellence at Windhoek Eye Institute offers all-inclusive medical and surgical management of even the most complex vitreo-retinal disease with the best possible outcomes.

Diabetes is a metabolic disorder which interferes with the body's ability to use and store sugar. It usually affects adults in their late forties or fifties. However, these days, owing to lifestyle changes, even young people can get diabetes. The classic symptoms of diabetes are increased thirst, frequent urination, weight loss, tiredness or blurred vision.

Uncontrolled diabetes can effect eyes, nerves and kidneys. Individuals with diabetes are more likely to develop cataracts at a younger age and are twice as likely to develop glaucoma as are non-diabetics. However, the primary vision problem caused by diabetes is Diabetic Retinopathy which damages the blood vessels of the retina.

In uncontrolled diabetes, high sugar in the blood can damage blood vessels in the eyes. As damage progresses, they begin to leak which results in the accumulation of fluid in the central part of the retina. This deterioration of the blood vessels causes a hindrance in the supply of oxygen and nutrients needed by the retina to stay healthy.

The spectrum of services provided by Windhoek Eye Institute includes retina care with advanced vitreoretinal surgeries, retinal detachment treatment, Diabetic Retinopathy management, laser retina treatment and anti-VEGF intravitreal injections.

Warning Symptoms:

  • Blurred, double, or distorted vision or difficulty reading.
  • Floaters or spots in your vision
  • Palatial or total loss of vision of a shadow or veil across your field of vision.
  • Pain, pressure, or constant redness of the eyes.

All diabetics are at risk of getting Diabetic Retinopathy. The risk multiplies the longer a person lives with diabetes. It has been observed that about 80% of long standing diabetics (15 years or more of diabetes) have some damage in the blood vessels of the retina. Diabetic Retinopathy can occur at a young age in juvenile diabetics.

Diabetic Retinopathy is a silent vision stealer. In early stages, there are hardly any symptoms. Hence, a diabetic must strictly get an eye exam done every year. If detected early, vision loss can be prevented, but once the damage is done, the effects are irreversible.

The ophthalmologist will do a comprehensive eye investigation to detect Diabetic Retinopathy. The eye exam includes visual acuity tests, eye pressure measurements and direct visualization of the retina with an ophthalmoscope. Sometimes the ophthalmologist may require more extensive imaging with technology like Fundus Fluorescein Angiography (FFA) and Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) to capture the details of the damage caused by abnormal blood vessels & assess the severity of the condition.

Diabetic Retinopathy Treatment

Laser Photocoagulation:

This is the most common line of action for Diabetic Retinopathy treatment. But remember, this can only save the existing sight level and cannot make it better. During laser treatment, the retina specialist uses laser to destroy areas of the retina deprived of oxygen which helps to prevent the growth of new blood vessels into these areas. It can be done during multiple sessions. In most cases, this procedure causes the new blood vessels to regress and swelling to subside. It usually take three to four months to be fully effective.


Sometimes the new blood vessels bleed into the gel like centre (vitreous) of the eye. This condition, Vitreous Hemorrhage can lead to a sudden loss of vision. If the Vitreous Hemorrhage is persistent then a procedure called Vitrectomy is recommended. This is a microsurgical procedure for diabetic retinopathy treatment which removes the blood and scar tissue from the centre of the eye. Many patients have improved vision after this procedure.

Intravitreal injections:

These help patients with gross swelling in the macula. It may require injections into the eye of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) inhibitor drug of steroid to reduce the growth of abnormal blood vessels and leakage of fluid from them. These may also be used prior to surgery to reduce the bleeding.

The choice of treatment depends on the stage of the diseases, the age of the patient and the recommendations of the retina specialist.

Diabetic Retinopathy Treatment – Success Rate

Patients who have already lost vision due to the diseases usually do not regain their original vision. However, vision loss from complications such as bleeding into the eye or cataracts can be regained after Diabetic Retinopathy treatment. There is evidence that proper blood sugar control can delay and limit the progression and complications of Diabetic Retinopathy for people with diabetes.

Retinal detachment is an extremely grave eye condition that happens when the retina separates from the tissue behind it. One can permanently lose vision if the retina detachment isn't repaired promptly.

Although retinal tears are different to retinal detachment, but they are often the first stage leading to retinal detachment. If fluid from within the eye passes through a retinal tear it can separate the retina from its underlying tissue.

Diabetic retinopathy is the consequence of damage to the tiny blood vessels that nourish the retina. They leak blood and fluids that cause swelling of retinal tissue and clouding and ultimately loss of vision. The condition usually effects both eyes and is serious.

Age Related Macular Degeneration

Preserve your sight for the best years of your life

Age-related macular degeneration (ARMD or AMD) is a disease that causes progressive deterioration on breakdown of the eye's macula. The macula is the part of the retina which is responsible for your central vision, allowing you to see fine details clearly. Macular degeneration is a part of the body's natural ageing process. It is quite common after the age of 65 years.

Treatment may slow down or prevent progressive loss of vision but cannot bring the lost vision back. An ARMD treatment plan includes Laser therapy & PDT, Anti-VEGF injections, and a combination of Therapy and Low Vision Aids.


Understanding Uveitis

Uveitis is the inflammation of the Uvea which is made up of the Iris, Ciliary body and Choroid. If we think of the eye as a hollow, fluid-filled, 3-layered ball, then the outer most layer is the sclera (a tough coat), the inner-most is the retina, (the thin light- gathering layer), and the middle layer is the Uvea (the vascular layer).

Signs and symptoms of Uveitis

  • Anterior Uveitis is associated with eye pain, redness, blurring of vision and light sensitivity.
  • Intermediate and Posterior forms of Uveitis may more typically be associated with floaters, flashes of light and blurred vision.

The reatment for Uveitis will depend on which areas of the eye are affected and what has caused the condition. Medication through drops and injections is the main treatment, but surgery can be used in particularly severe cases.

The majority of cases of Uveitis are idiopathic. This means that the process occurs without a specific identifiable cause or an associated health elsewhere in the body. In some cases, however, an underlying health condition may be present. Underlying causes of Uveitis may be broadly categorised as autoimmune disorders, infections, trauma, malignancy or other causes.

The eye needs to be examined very thoroughly to see what type of Uveitis you have. This usually involves instillation of eye drops to make the pupils wider so that the doctor can look into and inspect your eyes more thoroughly. It is equally important to see if there is evidence of any other underlying causes like auto immune disorders, infections, trauma etc. This may involve a whole variety of tests like blood tests, X&45;rays, scans, etc.

Treatment of Uveitis

The findings may be similar, but the treatment of Uveitis varies significantly depending on the type and cause of the Uveitis.
  • In the case of autoimmune Uveitis, the treatment may involve the use of corticosteroids and/or immunosuppressive drugs.
  • Treatment of Uveitis that stems from an infection, targets the treatment of the underlying infection.
  • Likewise, Uveitis may be a manifestation of a malignant condition. In this case, it is managed along with treating the underlying malignancy.

The treatment of some forms of Uveitis may involve collaboration between ophthalmologists and other specialist such as rheumatologists, infections disease specialists or oncologists. Most patient with acute Uveitis do not lose vision and treatment is aimed at controlling the inflammation to prevent any visual loss. The main cause of visual loss in patients with chronic Uveitis are cataracts, glaucoma or damage to the back of the eye from high pressure inside the eye, and macular edema or ‘waterlogging’ of the retina due to chronic inflammation. All these conditions are treatable.


Cornea services

Cornea Services

Save your Sight by Acting at the Right Time

According to World Health Organization, corneal blindness is the fourth leading cause of blindness in the world. Treating corneal blindness is possible through a cornea transplant. During this treatment, a healthy cornea is transplanted in place of a diseased cornea in its entirety (Penetrating Keratoplasty) or in part (Lamellar Keratoplasty). Since artificial corneas are not available, corneas can only be gained through an eye donation.

Although we have highly qualified surgeons and hospital facilities to do the transplant, we do not have enough eye tissues available to treat corneal blindness in our country.

Know Your Cornea

The cornea is the eye's outermost layer. It is the clear, dome-shaped surface that covers the front of the eye. It is responsible for more than 2/3rds of the eye's focusing power. Unlike most tissue in the body, the cornea contains no blood vessels to nourish or protect it against infection. Instead, the cornea receives its nourishment from the tears and aqueous humor that fills the chamber behind it. To see well, all layers of the cornea must be free of any cloudy or opaque areas. When the cornea becomes cloudy due to disease, injury, infection or malnutrition, vision is significantly lost or reduced.

Are You A Cornea Transplant Candidate?

Your doctor may suggest a cornea transplant in the following circumstances:

  • Scaring from infections such as eye herpes, fungal or bacterial Keratitis.
  • Hereditary corneal diseases or dystrophies.
  • Thinning or cornea or irregular shape due to Keratoconus.
  • Chemical burns on the cornea.
  • Excess selling on the cornea.

Procedure for Cornea Transplant

  • Get registered after consultation with your cornea surgeon.
  • Wait for the donor cornea. The waiting period for a donor eye depends on the voluntary donation of the eye.

Sight after Transplant

The vision will improve for one year following the surgery. You will need glasses or contact lenses for vision correction. The curve of the transplanted cornea cannot match exactly the curve of your own cornea. Typically, a prescription for glasses is given once all the stitches are removed. Rigid gas permeable contact lenses provide the best vision correction for corneal transplant patients due to irregularity of the cornea after the transplant.

Cornea Graft Rejection

Corneal transplant are performed routinely. In fact, of all tissue transplants, cornea transplants are the most successful. But, at times, exceptions happen. If the transplanted cornea is rejected by the body, the following symptoms occur:

  • Redness
  • Pain
  • Decreased vision
  • Extreme sensitivity to light

Your body can reject the transplanted cornea as early as one month post-surgery and as late as five years after the cornea transplant. Rejection may be successfully reversed and vision regained following prompt diagnosis & medical therapy.

Most corneal transplants in Namibia and even the world over are ‘full thickness’ corneal transplants. The diseased cornea is removed with all its layers and replaced by a similar or slightly larger sized donor cornea, also of full thickness. However, in certain diseases, such as `Keratoconus` or conical cornea or in superficial corneal scars, the innermost lining of the corneas, called the endothelium is intact and healthy and therefore need not be changed. This procedure is called Deep Anterior Lamellar Keratoplasty. As compared to a full thickness graft, it offers a faster rehabilitation & reduced rate of rejection with improved graft survival.


Paediatric services

Paediatric Ophthalmology & Squint

Specialist in Squint and Lazy Eye Syndrome

A Squint or Strabismus develops when the eye muscles do not work in a balanced way and the eyes do not move together correctly. This loss of coordination between the muscles of the two eyes leads to misalignment. Ideally, eyes move in parallel direction. But, in the case of Squint, also known as crossed eyes, one eye points in the direction in which the person is looking and the other eye turns inwards, outwards, upwards or downwards. This condition is more common in children than in adults.

The squinting eye is used less often and the brain tends to neglect the image from that eye. In children, this may lead to Amblyopia (Lazy Eye). Moreover, constant Squint reduces the development of binocularity and depth perception which are required for various activities like driving, sports etc.