LifestyleUkrainian teacher regains sight after groundbreaking surgery in UK amidst war chaos

Ukrainian teacher regains sight after groundbreaking surgery in UK amidst war chaos

The teacher from Kharkiv regained her sight.
The teacher from Kharkiv regained her sight.
Images source: © Getty Images | Getty Images
7:33 AM EST, January 28, 2024

Olena Kurylo's ordeal has stirred the interest of many. The 52-year-old Ukrainian relocated to Poland during the previous year. As a result of the Russian bombings, she endured extreme eye injuries. It was in Poland that she was able to receive essential care and had the initial three surgeries at a hospital in Katowice.

"I was terrified of the surgery. I distinctly recall the turning point during the procedure when I exclaimed: "I can see". I was ecstatic and very grateful (...). So far, I have regained 30% of my sight in my right eye. I have another operation in June, and I am hopeful the results will be even better after that," Kurylo confessed in an interview with Good Morning TVN in May 2022.

Regrettably, Kurylo's right eye sustained severe damage. Seeking further treatment, Olena travelled to the UK to have a complex operation that could determine if she would regain her sight. Her only hope lay in a specialist renowned worldwide.

Olena Kurylo regains her sight: "My life was given back to me"

The plight of Olena Kurylo captured the interest of a popular British magazine, "Mail on Sunday". The publication even organized a fundraiser to assist her. As a result of raising awareness about her situation, they collected 10,000 pounds for her eye surgery.

The renowned ophthalmologist Tom Williamson agreed to manage Olena's case. On her arrival in the UK, he conducted an extensive assessment. Subsequently, Kurylo underwent a 45-minute operation where the oil was removed without detaching the retina of the eye. The expert anticipated that her eye functionality would improve to 50%.

Following her recovery, it emerged that the visibility in Kurylo's right eye had improved to 75 percent, an incredibly positive outcome. Hence, the 53-year-old could comfortably get a driving license in England.

"Considering the injury Olena sustained, her vision is really impressive, far exceeding my expectations. She won't require further surgeries and can live without limitations," Tom Williamson commented for the "Daily Mail".

Currently, Olena remains in the UK, living in London. A charitable organization organized accommodations for her in a local's home. Kurylo aspires to return to a normal life - she wishes to work as a preschool teacher.

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