The childhood experience that inspired a researcher to prevent avoidable blindness

Growing up in Iran, Dr Ehsan Vaghefi’s first journey to school was not like that of the other children.

While his peers followed their parents to school, Dr Vaghefi acted as a guide for his father.

“I saw all the other kids with their dads walking them across the street, watching out for the cars and steps and I would do that for my dad,” he remembered.

Dr Vaghefi’s father became blind at the age of nine after a preventable cause of blindness, juvenile glaucoma, went undetected.

The experience was a formative one for Dr Vaghefi, who is now a bioengineer based at the University of Auckland in New Zealand.

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Published by on 15 Jan 2019