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  #1  
Old 7 Feb 2007
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Eye surgery complications

Hey everyone,

It's been a scary couple of weeks for me. I had laser eye surgery done a few weeks ago and had some complications. I won't tell the whole story here but have posted it to my trip blog at www.heretohere.com

Fortunately things are getting better but at this point I'd certainly rather have my glasses back than go through this again.

C.J.
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  #2  
Old 7 Feb 2007
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oh Dear!!!

I read your post with interest. I'm really sorry it went that bad and I hope you'll get better soon.

I had laser surgery about 3 or 4 years ago, and before that I spent probably 3 or 4 years thinking about it and doing research about it. I read many horror stories and that did put me off at first!
Fortunately I came across an excellent eye surgeon and the outcome was good.

For those of you thinking about it check this website: http://www.lasik-eyes.co.uk

It contains very useful information, describes all techniques, pros and cons of each, risks, and for UK people there is a list of all the clinics and patients can put a rating/outcome etc...
I had my eyes done a St Thomas Hospital, by Dr David O'Brart, a top surgeon. He is used as a specialist witness in court when patients sue their surgeons, he also picks up the pieces when big high street clinics mess up tehir patients' eyes!

Few words or warning if you're thinking to have surgery:

- most clinics (in the UK) use GPs not qualified surgeons. That's why it's cheap! Ensure the person doing your eyes is qualified! It takes 14 years studies to become a consultant.
- Have both eyes done 3 months apart. Not only is this useful to avoid being messed up on both eyes at the same time, but also for this reason: when the surgeon correct the eye, they will overcorrect, because the eye normally regress a bit. This overcorrection is an average. For my 1st eye for example, I was -6.5. The surgeon overcorrected by +1. i.e just after the surgery I was +1. Expecting a bit of regression. The thing is, it did not really happen. I'm just not average. So 3 months later the surgeon did not overcorrect and my right eye went spot on.
- ensure you see the surgeon well before surgery, during and after. You don't want to deal with assistants or nurses if things go wrong. You have to be able to see your surgeon post surgery quickly in case of problems. For my 1st eye, few days later, I was in a lot of pain, so I phoned David and he saw me the same day to check that all was ok...

If you have any questions feel free to contact me.
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Last edited by maria41; 28 Jul 2020 at 18:20.
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  #3  
Old 7 Feb 2007
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Sorry to hear about your experience.

But the same as Maria, i had my surgury done by Mr O´Brart. I was less than -3 in both eyes so had them done at the same time. that was 2 or 3 years ago now, and the only problems i have had are with slight sensitivity in the eye with grit or dust. Noe i have 20/20 vision in each eye.

I couldn´t recomended Mr. O´Brart enough. very professional. On my first consultation with him he recommended not having it done if i was happy to live with glasses, as the long term risks are not fully known. He was the only one to fully explain the risks of the operation and of the outcomes, compared to the other companies i spoke to.

If you are planning on having it done , make sure you understand the risks and allow time to heal, and for complications before trying to travel etc, would be my advice.

But in my case it was a success.

cheers
mike
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  #4  
Old 7 Feb 2007
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Generally this type of surgery is successful and complications rare, but when they happen, the effect can be catastrophic. this is currently the fastest growing area of medical litigation, not because the surgery necessarilly goes wrong but sometimes due to unrealistic expectation, so go in with your eyes wide open, so to speak!!
also re the above, be careful about only having one eye at a time done. if you are a medium'high prescription this can give significant problems in the interim with anisekonia, i.e loss of binocular vision. this is what you need for estimating speed and distance and general coordination. this could lead to temporary suspension of your driving licence. not all surgeons (even ophthalmic ones) understand this concept, so speak to your surgeon and your optician first.
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  #5  
Old 8 Feb 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moggy 1968
also re the above, be careful about only having one eye at a time done. if you are a medium'high prescription this can give significant problems in the interim with anisekonia, i.e loss of binocular vision. this is what you need for estimating speed and distance and general coordination. this could lead to temporary suspension of your driving licence. not all surgeons (even ophthalmic ones) understand this concept, so speak to your surgeon and your optician first.
YEs correct! No way you can wear glasses to correct vision on the "undone" eye in that case, only a contact lense. I already had that problem because my eyes were -6.5 and -3.5 so wearing glasses was not really good. After surgery in my left eye (the weakest) I had to wear a contact lense in the right eye to correct. That way it was ok. But no way I could wear my old glasses (after removing left lense!).
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  #6  
Old 9 May 2007
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Eye Update!

"Eye" just wanted to give everyone an update now post-op by nearly four months.

My dominant eye, after swinging between near and far-sightedness has settled down to 0.00 - pretty much perfect vision. My left eye did the same swinging back and forth and settled down at -0.50. I'll take it.

Rather than have two follow-up appointments in six months, I've been back to the clinic about 12 times to have my vision checked. EVERY single checkup my vision was different!

I think the saga for me is now over and I can concentrate on my trip planning. We are almost exactly one year away from our RTW tour!
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  #7  
Old 10 Jun 2007
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I had both of my eyes done at the same time in 2002 and now I'm really happy without eyeglasses (that are real nuisance when adventure-travelling). I consider this the best investment I have ever done and really recommend it to everyone who finds eyegasses to be on your way all the time.

Last edited by Rebaseonu; 14 Jun 2007 at 21:47.
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  #8  
Old 14 Jun 2007
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Unhappy Be careful what you wish for

Had cataract sugery done on both eyes 1 1/2 years ago. Made a bad chioce and now both eyes are 20/20. Worst thing I have ever had done! Lost my close-up vision.

I had lived with glasses since I was 10 years old and they had become part of me. I can't tell you the times they protected (saved) my eyes, on a motorcycle and off. Could take them off at night and read myself to sleep sans glasses. Was a pleasure to take them off and relax -- now I have to have +2 1/4 for reading and another pair of +1 for cooking or working at arms length and a pair of bifocals for all day wear so I can dial a cell phone or read a watch. I still "have to wear glasses".

Only saving grace so far is that the "Dollar Store" has reading glasses for a buck a pair.

Makes working on a bike a pain in the ass.

Don't want to whine but I wish I had my old glasses back. Sigh!
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  #9  
Old 14 Jun 2007
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cataract surgery is wholly and totally different to laser refractive surgery (where this thread started). They treat different conditions and are totally different types of surgery. One is a medical procedure, the other is a cosmetic operation.
Incidently, if you are going for cataract surgery and you are short sighted have a serious discussion with your surgeon about wether you really want him to try and correct you back to zero. As the writer above has found this may do you no favours at all. chances are he won't get you exactly right, so you may end up still needing glasses for distance, and you will lose all your accomodation so will need a reading, and possibly intermediate correction as well. If you are short sighted i(-3.00 or above)t is better to be corrected to about -3.00. this means standard single vision for distance, with the advantages mentioned previously, and some others, while reading just involves taking your glasses off, a lot less cumbersome than putting on reading glasses (suprisingly so). you may still need intermediates, but thats relatively easy to solve.
this is all for cataract surgery. refractive surgery, as per the original thread, is a completely different ball game with completely different end results required.
just in case your wondering, I'm an optician by the way, with a -10 prescription. My mum is also an optician and recently talked her surgeon into doing this for her cataracts and she is delighted with the results.
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Last edited by moggy 1968; 14 Jun 2007 at 22:38.
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  #10  
Old 26 Sep 2007
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Just a quick update for you guys that now, seven months after surgery, my eyesight is nearly perfect. I went in last week and measured up at 0.0 in my right eye and -0.25 in my left. Not too bad.

My night vision is still a little bit sketchy with glare, but I no longer have to worry about forgetting to put my glasses on after my helmet!
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  #11  
Old 12 Oct 2019
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Sorry to resurrect a very old thread but I was wondering if the advances in the techniques used has reduced the incidence of night glare and sensitivity to dry eye.

I keep coming back to this as I am still fed up with glasses - I have been wearing them for nearly 40 years. Is there any feedback from people that have had corrective eye surgery and have undertaken a trip in dry conditions - my planned trip will, hopefully, take in Iran during the spring and summer so may be a little warm and dry.
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  #12  
Old 12 Oct 2019
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay_Benson View Post
Sorry to resurrect a very old thread but I was wondering if the advances in the techniques used has reduced the incidence of night glare and sensitivity to dry eye.

I keep coming back to this as I am still fed up with glasses - I have been wearing them for nearly 40 years. Is there any feedback from people that have had corrective eye surgery and have undertaken a trip in dry conditions - my planned trip will, hopefully, take in Iran during the spring and summer so may be a little warm and dry.
As you read above I had the surgery many years ago.

Since then, I crossed many deserts in Central Asia for several months in my trip to Mongolia in 2014, and to Central Asia in 2016, as well as Namibia desert in my last long trip in Africa in summer 2018. I never had an issue with dry eyes or anything really.
Only thing is as I get older I need reading glasses now . But this is normal

For what is worth I was very short sighted, with -6.5 in the left eye and -3.5 in the right eye.
Also I had some astigmatism. It got better through surgery but was never completely corrected. That remains unchanged and not bothering me. My long distance vision is still excellent. Most important is the surgeon you chose and the technic you select. Discuss these issues.
Technology has changed so maybe better stuff in offer now. Still no regret with doing it but glad I did not do the lasik technic as the Flap never heal. Cornea does not work like that. Or so my surgeon told me, all those years ago.

I saw my surgeon for free, on his invitation, about 3 years ago for a catch up, to do with his research on long term effect of this surgery. All is good. He is still as passionate about the subject as ever.

Cheers,
Maria
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  #13  
Old 12 Oct 2019
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Hi Maria

I was hoping that you would reply and give some idea of the long term effects and the fact that you have been over long desert sections is an added bonus. -thank you.

The advice you give seems totally logical - again thank you. I didn’t realise that the flaps never heal - it seems odd that they do it, but they know their job better than I do.
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Old 16 Nov 2019
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I looked into it years ago and settled on Lasek. The chap was a surgeon and reading up on his bio, he'd had done a bind boggling number of operations.

Had the dominant eye done 1st and the other one about 3 months later. I shied away from the Lasik (flap) procedure as literature suggested that the flap could dislodge later in life from a blow or similar.

Both eyes were done with wavefront and before with glasses I could read 7 lines on the chart and after I could read 8. My original prescription was -3.5 & -2.5 with a minor astigmatism of 0.25.

Didn't suffer dry eyes at all - even during spells in the ME. Only issue I experienced was with the dominant eye 1st thing in the morning: if I opened it very suddenly upon waking up, the epithelium could rip off leading to a red eye and tons of tears - would settle in a few hours.The surgeon suggested tons of lotions & drops at night. Once I figured out, it best to take a few mins to open that eye - all has been well.

Best money I ever spent. It's been almost 10 years now and my vision has been stable. Obviously everyone's mileage can vary.

HIH

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Old 10 Dec 2019
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I found it very hard getting my hands clean enough to maintain my contact lenses on my recent 30,000km lap around Australia earlier this year.

(Next year's trip is northern Europe, into Russia and then southern Europe.)

After much indecision I'm getting lasered by Lasik machine in Perth on 19th December and will re-post on here with feedback.
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