These interviews are done face to face, but, for once, it is done by videoconference for a double cause. Incompatibility of agendas and technical facilities. By showing my compunction because the character leaves me alive, they assure me that I will be able to see him to the back of the eye, since they use this system to see the corneas of patients at a distance and contrast opinions about it. So, for once, the interviewee is in his field, in his ophthalmological clinic in Oviedo, and the interviewer in Madrid, looking at a plasma. Certainly, you see everything to the doctor on the screen. Outside, in the waiting room, dozens of people wait to enter the operating room without seeing the trees, or the forest, and they will see the flora and fauna in full.
Are the eyes a mirror of the soul?
More like the window. The Greeks said that revealing was finding the truth. If you remove a cataract, you are revealing, tearing the opacity. The eyes teach the interior of people.
In the 80 Basses they sang "do not look in the eyes of the people, they are afraid, they always lie".
The eyes do not lie. You can tell the lie, the insight, the love, the humor, the emotions. It is the other way around, when someone does not look into their eyes, it is when they hide something. I have professional deformation, and when I look into the eyes, I analyze what that someone has inside.
Can it be diagnosed by eye?
In class I always tell the story of a woman who came to the clinic every year, had a child and boasted how beautiful and big her eyes were. I saw it, and I had a congenital glaucoma: that's why I had big eyes. Yes, on the street an ophthalmologist can see that someone has something in their eyes.
"Luz is a green name, so I see you green, but not brown, but clarito". Luis Fernández Vega (Oviedo, 1952) presumes to suffer, or enjoy, synesthesia -to associate colors to concepts- to the point of including the data in his curriculum. "It also happened to Einstein," says the eminent ophthalmologist and brand new president of the Princess of Asturias Foundation. One hundred thousand patients a year improve their view in their clinics in Oviedo and Madrid.
Great grandson, grandson, son, father, uncle of oculists. What is Mom in your house to be all of the guild?
We also see from childhood that it is a profession that makes us happy and makes people happy. My children grew up watching videos of surgery when they arrived from school. Solving the vision problems of others is very rewarding.
From their operating room they go almost blind seeing. Does one feel God?
It is a grateful specialty, but I know perfectly my possibilities and my limitations. The other, in a stadium, thought about it. I have operated 30,000 people, as many as there were in the stands. It's a satisfaction, but you can not always fix everything.
Do you suffer when you can not?
We are not magicians. More electricians. The border is the optic nerve. It's like the cable and the light bulb. The eye is the bulb. We can almost do a glass transplant, repair the fuse. But if the cable is broken, at the moment, there is no way to fix it.
'Grosso modo', what they do is slice their eyes, with forgiveness.
Well, but sliced very well and in different ways: on the front, on the back. We have many specialists, each in one part of the eye, and we have more than 99% success.
Does the mobile eat our eyes?
If used a lot of time and at an early age, children can increase nearsightedness, being all day with the screens instead of being on the street or in the field looking far away. Yes.
With what is left in your clinic and in eating and sleeping your patients in Oviedo, you are a good percentage of Asturian GDP.
We receive 100,000 patients a year from Spain and around the world. I think it will take me to retire, but I have a great team, and my children are very well trained and will take over. There's Fernández Vega for a while.
It opens this year as president of the Princess of Asturias. You will tell me your 'fan moment' with Martin Scorsese.
Yes, we are all very excited. I really like his movies. The awards recognize the effort, talent and solidarity of the winners, and the truth is that they are all delighted with Oviedo, Asturias and Spain.
Is it no more true that they are blind to cabrales, cider and bagpipers and remain enigmatic?
LOL. The pipers, the Asturias beloved country and fabes put emotion. For us, but for the guiris too. They are impressed, walls are demolished, and they all like it very much.
If there were no glasses or surgery, I would prefer not to see up close or far. The trees or the forest?
Being hypermetropic would limit more. It would mean that, from 45, he could not read, or see a picture up close, or do fine handwork. However, if you do not have much short-sightedness, then you can defend yourself with some difficulty, but you read and see the close until a very old age.
Is the expression "sight tired", so poetic, accurate?
The eyes get tired, yes. The muscle begins to run out, hardens and can no longer mold itself to see up close. People tend to delay it, not so much because of aesthetics, because it is one of the first signs of aging. You see that you are no longer a teenager.
Step of 50 and I see fatally close. I operate or wait for me?
I would wait. If you see well from afar, wait a few years until the refractive defect is established. If you do not have cataracts, of course. But that is usually later.
In other words, in 100 years, all with presbyopia and cataracts.
It is like that. Things of the age.
Wearing glasses. In the eye surgeon's house, glasses of pasta. Do not you dare to have an operation?
There you have it: I am a myopic with two diopters and I can see a phenomenal close up. I operate without glasses and it does not bother me to use them to see from afar. I'm not interested in surgery.
And how do you see the picture?
Well, in general, although in some cases I do not see it as clear. I would operate myopia on many politicians. They have a too short-sighted view of things, and the long lights do come in handy.