SOE observership in Corneo-plastic Unit, Queen Victoria Hospital, United Kingdom

SOE observership in Corneo-plastic Unit, Queen Victoria Hospital, United Kingdom

By Dr Vesela Ivancheva (Specialized Eye Hospital, Varna, Bulgaria)

First of all I would like to express my deep gratitude to the European Society of Ophthalmology, who provided me with the Educational Grant for Ophthalmologists-in-training 2013 and gave me opportunity to learn in this elite ophthalmology centers in Europe- Corneo-plastic Unit, Queen Victoria Hospital, United Kingdom.

Prior to my attachment I had excellent communications with clinic’s secretary, Mrs Kathy Gibby. With this report I would like to share my greatest appreciation to her and to Ms Katie Ally since they both had assisted me with my hospital placement and all necessary paper work that needed to be done there.


At the Corneo-plastic Unit in QVH I had a perfect educational schedule and I was attached to the corneal team all the time.  At the clinics I was provided with excellent training by observation including: new methods of treatment, management of difficult cases and patient education.

I also spent a lot of time in the Operating Theatre, where I had the opportunity to observe number of complex ophthalmic surgical procedures every day, including: PHACO,  penetrating and lamellar keratoplasty, DSAEK, etc. I was observing  a great number of complicated and difficult cases intra- and postoperatively. I have learned much about every single aspect of operations and I got many surgical tips, as well as the process of hospital and home care of the patients and follow up visits after the surgery.

All the staff of QVH was very pleasant and welcoming, and they answered all my questions and provided me with additional knowledge.

I would like to separately thank Mr Damian Lake and Mr Samer Hamada, the corneal consultants, and Mr Panos Georgoudis and Mr Fook Chang Lam, the corneal fellows,  who did all their best to give me the maximum of this observership program.


Besides of all the knowledge this program gave me valuable professional contacts, new friends and impressions.


So, I value that this experience will be of a great benefit for my future practice.


I would gratefully recommend Corneo-plastic Unit, Queen Victoria Hospital to the future SOE grant recipients, and the excellent and admirable team of corneal surgeons for those who are interested in corneal surgery.