Trachoma is the world’s leading cause of infectious blindness. The disease starts off as a bacterial infection, yet left untreated, eyelashes turn inward and painfully scrape against the eye with every blink. In total misery and suffering constant headaches, trachoma victims pull out their own eyelashes in desperation.
Trachoma is a disease that highly impairs a person's ability to work and is a big factor in creating a vicious cycle of poverty and disability. Since people can barely leave the house, they are excluded from education and employment, which has negative repercussions for the whole community. Thriving in areas with poor sanitation, trachoma travels through personal contact via hands, clothes, and bedding; disproportionately affecting women and children through interaction.
But good news: all this misery can be prevented. Trachoma is easily treatable and the charitable organisation Sightsavers is working alongside the World Health Organisation to eliminate the disease by 2020.
Since 1950, Sightsavers has supported more than 379,000 operations and helped cure more than 118 million cases of trachoma with antibiotic treatments worldwide. Its secret of success? Sightsavers uses the SAFE strategy: treating trachoma through Surgery, Antibiotics, Facial cleanliness, and Environment improvements like basic sanitation.
The disease is treatable. The goal is achievable. And it looks like the end is finally in sight for trachoma.
You can also contribute and speed up the fight against trachoma by donating to Sightsavers. The end of this disease is just a click away 👇