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  • OT: Cataract surgery

    Finally gave in and went for the surgery. Sharp instruments near my eyes scare me a lot, so it was not an easy decision.

    Not a terrible process.
    First a class and video about the surgery, prep and followup.
    A week of prep drops, then a thorough eye measurement.
    A meeting with the surgeon.
    Some prep drops for a couple of days before the actual surgery.
    Surgery day starts with some sedative solutions.
    Lay on an operating table during the procedure.
    Since I was having both eyes done at the same time I was laying there for 45 minutes - I was getting really antsy laying still for that long. The surgeon yelled at me a couple of times to lay still!
    Afterwards I had to wear eye shields when sleeping and protective glasses when awake. Don't rub your eyes!
    And multiple eye drops for 5 weeks after surgery.

    My cataracts were bad and kinda yellow, so for the first few days everything seemed quite blue - and very bright. The cataracts were blocking significant light.
    But, for the first time in my life I could see distance without glasses. However I need reading glasses for anything within about 3 feet.

    I'm happy with the results and will get used to the lack of near vision over time. It may take a lot of time since I've been wearing glasses for 65 years.

    Mike

  • #2
    I took the other route for focus. I was near sighted and so wore glasses for distance since a freshman in high school. The surgeons said I would have 20/20 vision after surgery without glasses. I said I do a great deal of close work, so a near focus of ~12" would be great. They said they couldn't guaranty that exact distance and an exact match for both eyes. The eye surgeries were one month apart. They were very honest up front! Well, now my right is eye is focused at ~9" and the left at ~12". The brain compensates wonderfully. I've lived with this for 15 years and wouldn't change a thing. I do have lined bifocals for computer work. Upper for the screen and lower for the keyboard (I hunt-and-peck type.)

    Ken

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    • #3
      Just had my left eye done last week. It came out great! So clear and bright, I didn't realize the color I was missing. You're right; my right eye is seeing "dirty yellow". Can't wait to get that one done. I'm surprised they did both of yours at the same time. My doctor wouldn't do that. I was out for the whole operation and don't remember them saying anything. It was funny. I woke up and someone was removing the covers and all. I asked if I was supposed to be awake because I thought they were still working on the eye. I didn't feel a thing even after the operation. No soreness at all. I'm still putting drops in the eye. One steroid, one NSAID and one antibiotic. When I went back the day after the op, I had 20-20 in that eye. Seems like it's gotten a little better than that now. I go back for another check next week. I hope they'll schedule the right eye soon.

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      • #4
        Had right one done in July (accounts for dropping out of sight here).

        The doc, one of the top 10 in the city and county area, left a bit of the old lens inside the eye, which apparently is fairly common. So retinal surgeon had to vacuum that out (good news, that also took most all the floaters!). When I went back, the nurses at the medical center asked why I was back as it was just a day later. They were extremely surprised, they said he virtually never has any complications occur.

        Almost recovered from that as of Nov. , still have pupils of different sizes, as if I had been conked on the head. Most things are still very bright, although the eye is an absolute hawkeye for distance (not counting a couple extra images that appear down and to the right for bright objects). Brightness should go away in time, I understand they "laser spotweld" the retina down to prevent problems with it coming loose, which commonly damages nerves or blood vessels causing that issue.

        Has not been encouraging as to doing the other, however.
        1601

        Keep eye on ball.
        Hashim Khan

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        • #5
          I had both eyes done this past summer. Everything went great, no real drama. I have perfect long distance and mid range vision but have to wear glasses for reading. My eyes are still very light sensitive and I end up wearing dark sunglasses when I am outside. I hope that light sensitivity goes away, because I'm not a big fan of sun glasses.---Brian
          Brian Rupnow

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          • #6
            Before I had cataract surgery I did a lot of research, because the doctors said the success rate was better than 95%, but 60% of the patients I talked to were not entirely pleased! The doctors considered it successful if your vision was better than with cataracts. I had refractive cataracts, not blurring but seeing double. When I got lost on a business trip because the letters on street signs overlapped so much that I couldn’t read them.

            The 3 weeks between each eye surgery was hell. My vision was 20/1000, needing 10 diopters of correction in my glasses. So the 20/1000 in one with 20/10 in the other my brain just couldn’t adapt!

            When I got back to work I was in for a big shock. I sat down in front of my two large monitors with drawings I suddenly realized I only saw clearly a spot about 6” in diameter, all the rest was

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            • #7
              Blurred even with my new progressive glasses. I wound up needing computer glasses. These glasses are also progressives but focus within a range 12” to 36” which works well when sitting at my desk.

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              • #8
                I have cataracts too (just diagnosed this past summer) and worse in the right eye but I have put off surgery because I am worried about complications from the surgery causing permanent problems that are worse than the cataracts. No one I know has had surgery to correct cataracts so this thread is very timely! Hopefully I can figure out if my worries are baseless or not.
                Location: Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada

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                • #9
                  I have noticed that clear crisp vision tends to be over an arc of maybe 3 to 5 degrees, AND I need to point my head off to the side, and look toward my nose, to get the really-clear-at-distance vision. That is with progressives. Seems it used to be bigger. I think they fouled up the center of vision.

                  BUT, they have a guarantee, so I can get that error of center fixed!

                  Maybe trifocal lined glasses would be better, but I suspect that means three discrete distances are good, and the others are blurred more-or less. I notice that the "spot" for say, 200' vision is different from the "spot" for 100' vision, and 50' vision, 20' vision, etc are each likewise discrete different spots on the progressive lens,

                  I am not carrying a bunch of glasses.... it's been one does all for 55 years, and it should still be!
                  Last edited by J Tiers; 11-07-2019, 07:59 PM.
                  1601

                  Keep eye on ball.
                  Hashim Khan

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by J Tiers View Post
                    ..., still have pupils of different sizes...
                    I noticed mine were different sizes right away. The old lens in the right eye is darker and lets in less light so the iris is adjusting for less light by opening up. My "new eye", as I call it, seems to be adjusting to light just great. I wear sun glasses as much as I can any way.Gotta protect the eyes from UV. I'd go in tomorrow for the other eye. I can hardly wait.

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                    • #11
                      Don't have cataracts...……..yet,....but did wake up 24 July 19 blind in left eye. Went to bed with 20/05 vision in that eye, sometime during the night the retina detached, no injury, no trauma, it just decided to detach.

                      Had surgery on it that evening, the surgeon vacuumed out the vitreous humor, and laser welded the retina back in place. Pumped in some ethylene gas to support the retina while things healed up.
                      Had to spend the first 7 days after the surgery face down at least 23.5 hours a day so the bubble could support the retina like a bandage.

                      All that was done in a hospital operating room under general anesthesia. Only pain upon awakening was in the facial muscles from the spreader clamp he used to keep the eye wide open while he worked on it.

                      Vision only came back to 20/100 at first, then after about 4 days started to improve, now 4 months later it is about 20/40 in that eye, with a wrinkle in the lens that causes some blurring right in the middle of my vision.

                      Then at the 3 month checkup he announced I had a small tear and two small holes in the same retina, but that only required about 15 minutes in his office to repair, using a laser. Unfortunately the eye numbing drops don't work on me, so felt the slight sting of each laser pulse, but it was a nothing.

                      What hurt more than any of the bullet wounds I ever incurred in 41 years with Uncle Sam was each time that extremely bright green light flashed and hit my optic nerve, it felt like someone was driving a white hot railroad spike through my eye and out the back of my head with a 20 pound sledge.

                      Pain stopped within seconds of the laser being turned off, but took 15 minutes of on and off tack welding to seal up the tear and the two holes. Had a slight headache for about an hour after , but walked out of the office as soon as he was finished.

                      Things viewed through that left eye alone now seem smaller than viewed with just the right eye, and they are slightly dimmer. Was told after the first surgery that it would likely accelerate the growth of a pin prick sized cataract that was in that eye prior to the detachment.

                      Next appointment in 2 weeks, hoping it will be good news and that I can go get glasses to correct vision so I can see at a distance again, as the right eye has been 20/30 for 20 years now. Really hoping for no more tears or pin holes, not looking forward to that laser again.

                      Oh, and if the slight swelling in the eye hasn't gone down (4 months of Prednilisone topical steroid drops 4 times a day so far) Dr. says he will have to give me a shot of steroid in the eye.

                      Not sure he has enough staff in the office to hold me down for that one!

                      But at least I can see out of both eyes, even if only clearly at short distances, with some slight blurring in one spot from that left eye.

                      Not that many years ago I might have lost the eye completely. Still could I suppose, but hope not!
                      Steve
                      NRA Life Member

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by CCWKen View Post

                        I noticed mine were different sizes right away. The old lens in the right eye is darker and lets in less light so the iris is adjusting for less light by opening up. My "new eye", as I call it, seems to be adjusting to light just great.....
                        Mine is the opposite, new lens iris is open farther, old lens iris closes down fine..... leads to some odd visual effects, new lens eye is too sensitive in light, but slow to open in the dark.... it has probably gotten a bit better, but doc is threatening to make it stay closed down, not sure I want that either.
                        1601

                        Keep eye on ball.
                        Hashim Khan

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                        • #13
                          I don't have cataracts, but I did recently have laser eye surgery to correct "narrow angle glaucoma", so I am familiar with the "bee sting" of the green laser treatment. When I was a kid, I had astigmatism, and wore glasses in the 1950s to correct that. I always read a lot and became nearsighted in the 1980s, so I wore glasses for distance vision such as driving, but eventually I became more farsighted. Now art the age of 70 I only occasionally use low power reading glasses, and flip-up magnifiers for close work such as soldering and machining. I also have a couple pairs of bifocal safety glasses. My left eye is better for close focus (12" or so), while the right eye is better for distance (48" or so to infinity). I think I have at least 20/20 visual acuity in both eyes uncorrected - maybe 70 years of eating carrots paid off!

                          Last week I noticed the inside part of my left eye was very bloodshot, so I visited the doctor on Tuesday and he said it was just a ruptured blood vessel, probably caused by straining. I have been doing a lot of heavy physical work, busting rocks and concrete with a sledge, shoveling dirt, digging out big rocks, carrying concrete blocks, mixing and pouring concrete, and cutting and splitting wood. I just finished laying the last block in the rear bottom of the foundation I've been building, and I have just ten more blocks to complete the bottom courses. The second course should be easier and will go faster, with no need for digging and careful leveling and placement.

                          BTW, here is the meaning of 20/20 vision (Snellen visual acuity): https://www.allaboutvision.com/eye-exam/2020-vision.htm
                          Last edited by PStechPaul; 11-08-2019, 03:32 AM.
                          http://pauleschoen.com/pix/PM08_P76_P54.png
                          Paul , P S Technology, Inc. and MrTibbs
                          USA Maryland 21030

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                          • #14
                            I have mild cataracts that don't have much impact except headlights at night and welding. Having worn glasses since 3rd grade(and really needed them sooner), I really lean toward corrected vision close up, and glasses for distance as KMoffet did. I normally wear no-line multifocal lenses or non-prescription safety glasses, but did a trial with "2 pairs for $69" monofocal glasses set for near and far vision. I found I ended up out and about without the near glasses, but never drove off without the far glasses.

                            It appears very few people make KMoffet's decision, but it seems like it would work best for me as well. Are there any others out there who went with close vision when they had cataract surgery? I'd be interested in hearing about your experience as well.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Arcane View Post
                              I have cataracts too (just diagnosed this past summer) and worse in the right eye but I have put off surgery because I am worried about complications from the surgery causing permanent problems that are worse than the cataracts. No one I know has had surgery to correct cataracts so this thread is very timely! Hopefully I can figure out if my worries are baseless or not.
                              My eldest brother just had both his done a few weeks ago, they did one eye at a time a couple weeks apart. He said the cataract surgery was easy, didn't feel a thing, he was also surprised at just how much vision was being obstructed by them.

                              From talking to several people that have had it done, it's like a lot of things medical, the longer you wait, the more involved it becomes.
                              I just need one more tool,just one!

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