March 29, 2011 by zssedu
An interview with dr. Zlatko Slavac (ZS), a vitreo-retinal surgeon from Croatia, who visited Poznan as a tutor in vitrectomy operations. The interview was conducted by Ignacy Grzybowski (IG)
IG: How common is vitrectomy in Croatia?
ZS: Vitrectomy is not a very common operation in Croatia. There are only several hospitals where vitrectomy is performed. Our hospital is one of them. But the need for vitrectomy is much higher than it is possible to deal with. In general people are becoming elder and elder and age-related retinal diseases, which are treated by vitrectomy are more common.
IG: Why do you deal with this kind of surgery, Sir?
ZS: At first, this is a challenge. For everybody who really likes surgery vitrectomy is the final challenge, because they are the most complicated types of ophthalmic operations. They are always different and they need an engagement to do a good vitrectomy. The second reason is that we have to do that because we need to help our patients.
IG: Where do you live?
ZS: I live in a town which is called Varasdin. The town is located about 8o km north from Zagreb. It is the former capitol of Croatia, but it was burnt down, and after that Zagreb became the capitol of Croatia. Varasdin has the oldest fireguards in Croatia established about 120 years ago.
IG: What is your hobby?
ZS: I have several hobbies. My main hobby today is diving. I am also a diving instructor. I do not dive as much as I used to earlier when I was younger, but I still very like it very much. Besides diving I also like hitch-hiking, doing some walking in the outdoors, and doing some gardening.
IG: Is diving harmful for eyes?
ZS: No. The short answer is just “No”. If you want an explanation. In diving a lot of organs can be damaged. But the main danger is to organs which are filled with air, because of the pressure changes related to diving. The eye itself is filled with liquid. So they are actually not in danger from diving, except if you are having a decompression situation. That is another story.
IG: Have you ever been to Poland before?
ZS: I have been to Poland twice. The first time was almost 40 years ago when I was a child. I came with my parents. For the second time I was here with my volleyball club, in Gdynia, Zakopane and Cracow.
IG: How do you like Poznań?
ZS: I like it very much. I have seen the old story of Poznan in the museum in the Franciscan monastery basement. And it is fascinating how old this city is and how many times the city was destroyed, but nevertheless the city was rebuilt again and it is quite nice.
IG: Thank you very much for the conversation
ZS: Thank you very much for your questions.