Sucking the eyes out of your head through a tube.

Discussion in 'Fred's House of Pancakes' started by daniel, Sep 18, 2013.

  1. hkmb

    hkmb Senior Member

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    This all sounds like very good progress. I'm pleased to hear that it's going so well.

    I'm long-sighted to a similar degree to your (former and soon-to-be-former) short sight, and have very similar levels of astigmatism. My monthly soft lenses give me a + 2.75 astigmatism correction, which isn't quite enough, but it's better than the pain of gas-permeables.


    Thanks for these. I've listened to (and read) Dan Savage for years: his column was syndicated in Hong Kong's free listings magazine in the late 90s, and I've been hooked ever since.

    The science and sceptic ones all sound interesting. If you haven't tried it, you might enjoy The Guardian's Bad Science column ( Bad science | Science | The Guardian ).

    Oh, and for a science comedy podcast, you might like The Infinite Monkey Cage, which is co-presented by Brian Cox (of Wonders Of The Universe and other BBC science stuff, and also of course one-hit wonders D-Ream). It's at BBC - Podcasts and Downloads - The Infinite Monkey Cage. It's very funny, and Brian Cox takes great delight in being horrible about supernatural beliefs.

    I've got several long drives to Canberra, a flight to Beijing, and train journeys across China coming up in the next month, so your suggestions will all come in very useful indeed. I'm looking forward to them.
     
  2. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    I wore hard lenses for many years, then switched to gas permeable when they became available, which were an improvement. When I re-adopted contact lenses for hiking a few years ago, I got the monthly disposables, and year ago I switched to daily disposables, even though they offer less astigmatism correction than monthly disposables, because they are so much more convenient, and are much more comfortable.

    Now, if all goes well with the left eye (knock on wood!) I will be done with contact lenses for good. I'll be able to hike and dive without correction.

    Yesterday I had my one-week post-op checkup, and the right eye is doing fine, and now has 20-20 vision. I think this is better vision than I've ever had (with correction!) in that eye.

    The doctor said there's a 90% chance of similar results in the left eye, but he cannot make any promises because there are too many variables, some of which are outside his control. Getting the artificial lens in the right position is, and he's apparently an extremely good eye surgeon. But how well it seats itself and remains in place as the eye heals is not. And the correction of the new lens is based on calculations made after a couple of different machines took measurements of my eyes. There could be errors in those measurements. And what I have not asked him is whether or how much, changes in the eyes as I age will affect my vision. If the distance between the lens and the retina changes as I get older, then my vision will deteriorate. I do not know if or how much this happens.

    The other day a friend let me try on his progressive glasses, and I think those might be a solution for intermediate work (farther away than reading, but too close for clear distance vision; e.g. cooking, where I'm sometimes paring veggies up close, sometimes chopping on the cutting board, sometimes reaching into the fridge or a cupboard, etc., or for working at the computer, where the keyboard is half the distance from my eyes that the screen is). I know I'll still want dedicated reading glasses, because I spend a lot of time reading. I might also want super-close glasses for when I get a splinter or something. I've already bought a big stand-up magnifying glass for the bathroom and a couple of small magnifying glasses to carry around, and I've ordered a big wall-mounted magnifying mirror.
     
  3. VTAERO

    VTAERO Junior Member

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    I was given a progressive bi-focal when I had my surgery because without it the eye with the fake lens cannot focus on different distances. Now to see at various distances close or far I tilt my head slightly and everything is in focus.

    The only trouble with this is when an object is moving very quickly at me, such as when driving. Sometimes it is hard to read signs like this until I'm very close.

    Nexus 7 ? 4
     
  4. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    If they get the left eye even close to as good as the right, I won't need any glasses for driving. Just near to medium indoors.
     
  5. hkmb

    hkmb Senior Member

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    This is all excellent news. I'm glad to hear that the first eye has gone so well. Good luck with the second!

    My Dad tried progressive lenses, but they made him throw up all the time.
     
  6. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    I would not use them for the full range of distances. Just for medium-distance indoors: computer, cooking, etc. I once tried bifocals, and they made me dizzy. But my friend's progressive glasses felt like something I could get used to. But again, I would not be using them most of the time.
     
  7. hkmb

    hkmb Senior Member

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    I suspect that some people on this board would say that you've been looking at the world through progressive glasses for a long time......
     
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  8. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    I was a red cradle baby.
     
  9. Chuck.

    Chuck. Former Honda Enzyte Driver

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  10. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    Today I began (according to schedule) using my pre-op eyedrops in the left eye. I have to leave the contact lens out for half an hour afterwards, which is a bit of a nuisance. One drop in the left eye three times a day, and two drops in the right eye, five minutes apart, three times a day. On Monday they operate on the left eye. Then for the following week three drops in the left eye, five minutes apart, four times a day, and one drop in the right eye twice a day. But no more contact lens after the surgery. I'm getting tires of wearing the contact lens. Drops in the right eye continue on a diminishing schedule for two more weeks, and drops in the left eye, on a diminishing schedule, for a month. Then if all is well I'll get permanent prescriptions for reading and middle-distance glasses.

    I wore contact lenses (hard lenses, then later gas-permeable) from the time I was 12 (that would have been in 1960) until some time in my middle 40's, when I went back to glasses. I was probably in my 50's when I got soft contact lenses for hiking and snorkeling, but then I only wore them for the activity, and took them out right after. So wearing the lens all day long this week has been unpleasant, since I'm not used to it. After tomorrow, if all goes well, I should never have to wear them again.

    I should have done this a couple of years ago.
     
  11. hkmb

    hkmb Senior Member

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    Good luck for the next stage!
     
  12. fjpod

    fjpod Member

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    I've been reading this thread with some interest being an optometrist myself. I find most of the comments made to be on target. While I don't do the actual cataract surgery myself, I am thoroughly involved with pre and post op cataract care and the issues that go with it. I would add a few things...but be forewarned, never take medical advice from a forum. Talk to your eyecare professional.

    Astigmatism can exist in the lens of the eye as well as in the cornea, so sometimes it can be corrected without a toric IOL and sometimes it cannot. It is best to follow the advice of your pre-op doc or surgeon (if they are not one and the same). It generally is well worth the money if you need the astigmatism correction. (I wish I could say the same thing about bifocal implants...many people do not like them).

    Your final prescription after surgery can be targeted. If you are used to a prescription of -9.00, for example, you may prefer to be targeted to -2.00 after surgery instead of 00. This will give you an edge at near ...but will require you to wear a distance correction, that is not so thick. We generally do not recommend this if you are farsighted to begin with before surgery. You should discuss this with your pre-op doc.

    There are risks to cataract surgery. Many factors should be considered such as how badly vision has deteriorated, how active the person is, general health and other ocular problems that can predispose the patient to unusual complications. There is no -one rule fits all- when it comes to cataract surgery.

    Above all, discuss all your questions with an eyecare professional or two that you trust. Don't simply gather information from the internet and march yourself into surgery without agreement with your eye doctor.

    ...and, oh yeah, "sucking your eyeballs out of your head through a tube", is quite an exaggeration.
     
  13. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    Absolutely!

    Interesting. This gives me hope that perhaps they'll be able to correct it completely.

    I had expected to have this conversation with the surgeon beforehand. So when he didn't raise the option for discussion, and just said we'd try for as close to 20-20 vision as we could get, I took that to be his recommendation. I had given it a lot of thought, and I had come to the conclusion that I wanted as near perfect distance vision as I could get, so as to be able to go hiking and see distance clearly without correction. So his implicit assumption regarding my preference was correct.

    There are times when I come here for advice. Medical issues are not among them. Or, I ask opinions to get ideas for starting my research, and to have ideas about what to talk to my doctor about. Sometimes it helps to know what questions to ask.

    Yeah, but it just sounded too good to pass up as a thread title. :)

    It is now Monday afternoon. The second surgery went well this morning. I now have an eye guard over my left eye, which is annoying. The eye feels a bit dry and scratchy, both of which I was told to expect. I have permission to remove the eye guard and put in artificial tears if I like, and then replace the eye guard, and a recommendation to take tylenol if it hurts or the scratchiness becomes bothersome. My reading glasses fit very awkwardly over the eye guard, making reading awkward. But this is only for a day. Tomorrow morning I go in for my post-op and they'll take the eye guard off. I will no longer need to wear contact lenses, and will probably no longer need to wear glasses for distance, though I won't know that for sure until both eyes have healed. One week after the first surgery the right eye had 20-20 vision and the doctor thinks they've corrected all the astigmatism. Perhaps in a week I'll be able to say the same about the left eye.

    It's amazing what they can do! I've been extremely myopic (like 20-400 without correction and 20-30 with correction) all my life. I wore glasses from perhaps the age of 6 until the age of 12, when I started wearing contact lenses. Then I returned to glasses in my 40's. And now probably I will only need glasses for reading and middle-distance.
     
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  14. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    This morning I got the eye guard removed and had my post-op for the left eye. All is well, and my vision in the left eye is "a strong 20-30," which is about what it was in the right eye the day after surgery. So there's good reason to hope that the left eye will get to 20-20 like the right eye.

    It is a big relief to have the eye guard off. Yesterday was very unpleasant, as I knew it would be. The eye guard prevents the reading glasses from sitting properly, and partially blocks vision from that eye. But now it's gone. And no more contact lenses! It was great to have them for hiking, as glasses are a nuisance when they fog up and you cannot see the trail, but they are a nuisance, and not always comfortable. Now I can hike without glasses or contacts. Whoooopeeee!

    In a week I go in for the one-week post-op, and in a month, if all goes well, the final post-op and a refraction for reading glasses to replace the off-the-shelf ones I'm using now. Even the temporary reading glasses are MUCH nicer now, after the surgery on the left eye. And I expect it to get better over the course of this week.
     
  15. hyo silver

    hyo silver Awaaaaay

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    That's great news, Daniel. I'm sure you'll enjoy your newfound eyesight very much.
     
  16. hkmb

    hkmb Senior Member

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    I'm delighted to hear it. Congratulations!
     
  17. milkman44

    milkman44 Active Member

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    Go0d that it went well, one of the most noticeable changes for me in addition to the clearer vision, was oncoming headlights no longer looked like everyone had their high beams on.
     
  18. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    That's nice to know. I've avoided driving at night as much as I can, in part because of that. (Also because I get sleepy early.) It will be nice if driving at night becomes a bit less uncomfortable, though I still expect to avoid it when I can.

    *********

    Today I had the one-week checkup for the left eye. He also looked in the right eye, but only dilated the left. Conclusion: all is going well. The incision is not yet completely healed, which is normal at one week. My vision in the left eye is not quite as good as it was in the right eye after a week, and he said the left eye might never be as good as the right. I still have a half a diopter of astigmatism, down from 3.25 diopters in the left eye, a big improvement. And being 20-20 or nearly so is worlds of improvement over 20-400. (I could read the big E, though I was never sure if I could really read it, or if I just remembered it. They ought to change the letters in the eye chart. I could not read the line below the E without glasses.)

    I asked how long it normally takes for the eyes to settle into their final post-op state. They give it a month before doing a refraction, just to be sure. He said at one week most of the improvement has come but there's usually a little bit more improvement in the second week. So it looks as though I'll have 20-20 in the right eye, and not quite that in the left, with half a diopter of astigmatism. Good enough that I will no longer need glasses or contact lenses for hiking, and I'll still have much better vision than I had with glasses before. And since I won't need contacts, I will not need to wash my hands in the morning in freezing cold water. (At my favorite hiking lodge, the sink for guest use is cold-water only, and it can be VERY cold.) There's still a little swelling or overpressure in the left eye, as it's not completely healed yet, so it's likely that I'll still get a little bit of improvement in that eye.

    I am not allowed to jog for another couple of weeks, but I can increase the intensity of my workouts on the exercise bike, and I can resume using the weight machine.

    I should have had this done two years ago, though I'm not sure they would have done it then.

    He said I can dive if I want to after the eyes are all healed. I would not go before May anyway, when the weather is nice and warm in the Caribbean.
     
  19. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    Well today I had my final (one-month) checkup and all is well. My vision is 20/25 in my right eye with one diopter of astigmatism and 20/20 in the left with half a diopter of astigmatism. With both eyes together my vision is 20/15 (a wee bit better than 20/20!) And everything looks healthy, according to the doc who examined my eyes. I got prescriptions for glasses, and ordered them: One pair strictly for reading; one progressive pair for the distances from 6 or 8 feet up to reading, and one pair super-close-up as an alternative to using a magnifying glass for tiny type and pulling slivers or cutting hangnails. Since I had several pairs of glasses already (distance, reading, and a spare emergency pair for distance, as well as a couple older pairs) I took them in and they'll put the new lenses in them.

    All in all, the whole thing was very easy. The eye cover (for one day after each eye's surgery) was annoying, and the eye drops were a nuisance. The two-week period between procedures, during which my eyes were radically different, was awkward. But all of this was small potatoes. There was no pain involved (except for the painful pin-prick of the local anesthetic they gave me before inserting the IV before the surgeries) and the results were only slightly shy of ideal. (Zero astigmatism would have been ideal).

    It is absolutely amazing that they were able to replace my natural cataract-degraded lenses with artificial plastic ones and not only give me better than 20-20 vision, but very significantly reduce my astigmatism, and do it without pain.
     
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