Interview with Dr. Todorce Josev, specialist ophthalmologist
“In order to be able to help the patient, the most important thing is the approach”
- This year the diagnostic center of Sistina Ophthalmology in Stip will open, where you will also be part of the team of doctors. What does such an engagement mean?
It is a great professional challenge to be part of such a team. In the new diagnostic center we will have different procedures and ways for detailed and complete examinations. We will work with the entire population, literally, from the youngest to the oldest and all kinds of examinations. I expect the state-of-the-art equipment and a team of doctors who will perform examinations to bear fruit in the diagnosis and treatment of patients from this region.
Commitment and constant further education are most important when facing professional challenges.
- So far you have worked in the field of public health. Will that experience help you in the further course of your career?
I started working at the emergency center in the hospital “8th September”, then I worked as a doctor in the emergency unit, followed by specialization at the Clinical Center “Mother Teresa” and four years of work at the Medical Center in Sveti Nikole. The experience with patients and institutions in the field of public health has both positive and negative aspects. Most important is the desire to help patients and the approach in that direction. The positive experiences of the patients for me were and remain the most important, both then and now, when I continue my career in the most successful eye hospital in Macedonia.
- You are considered a good diagnostician. On what basis is a good diagnosis made?
Based on medical knowledge and precise equipment for work. The technology and equipment available to the hospital are the best support for any diagnostician. Of course, it is important to upgrade the acquired knowledge, to follow the new world trends and experiences.
- When is it best for patients to come for an examination and what kind?
It is best to do a detailed examination at least once a year, preferably with dilated pupils where you can see in detail the front and back segment of the eye and to determine in detail the condition of the eye and the exact diopter if any. Unlike regular annual check-ups, people who have certain systemic diseases (such as pre-diabetes) need to come regularly, i.e. for a shorter period of time every 4 to 6 months and to monitor the condition of their eyes. Regular checkups are important because they can prevent and detect changes in time and respond appropriately.
Of course, all those who will feel any symptoms other than the usual ones, such as changes in the field of vision, reduced vision, distorted image, shadows, etc., should be examined.
- What is the examination of a patient with diabetes. What tests should be done?
The examination begins with the determination of visual acuity, measurement of eye pressure, dilation of the pupils to see the lens and posterior segment, ultrasound, OCT, to determine whether there is macular edema or not. It is very important to monitor the condition, because it can evolve quickly.
- What should be the communication with the patient before the diagnosis is made (for it to be successful)?
The most important thing for the patient is to be relaxed when the disease is diagnosed. The doctor should not be authoritative, on the contrary, friendly. It is important to explain to the patient in an understandable way what the disease is and what to expect in the treatment process. The patient should be listened to carefully, to understand the symptoms, emotions and the pain they have. If they feel frustrated or depressed, those emotions should be overcome, explaining that treatment is certainly a condition that leads to improvement.
- How do patients react when they hear the diagnosis?
Patients respond differently. They have different emotions and expectations. It is normal for anyone undergoing a hospital examination to be afraid of the final outcome. But when they understand the whole process, patients gain confidence in the doctor, become calmer and easily enter the treatment process.
- What do you do in your free time?
I read books, listen to music, watch movies. I often go for walks with my daughter. We ride bicycles and rollerblades. We have good moments together, we talk and we joke.
- Which book would you recommend?
The works of Stephen King. When I was specializing, I set a goal to read them all.
- What kind of music do you listen to?
Rock. Rolling Stone, Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin …
- Which movie can you say is your favorite?
Forrest Gump and the Green Mile – based on a novel by Stephen King.