Author Topic: Cataract surgery  (Read 2481 times)  

Offline Mike D. aka jmiked

  • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
  • *******
  • Posts: 5087
  • Terra firma
    • View Profile
Cataract surgery
« on: August 07, 2014, 04:18:39 pm »
Sigh. I couldn't put it off any longer, I'm going in for lens replacement on my right eye on the 20th. I've gotten to the point I can't read street signs until I'm right up on them, although I can see traffic well enough to avoid hitting turtles, elephants, squirrels and the like.  It's just that I can't see fine details any more. A while ago I pretty much gave up driving after sundown. My optometrist told me late last year that I would not pass the eye test for driver's license renewal (although that is not for another four years).

It's also made bicycling on dirt trails a bit dicey. It's to the point where small rocks on the path just escape notice until it's almost too late to avoid them. At 71 years of age, I don't feel like taking a tumble. I might damage my expensive cross-country bicycle.  :o ;D

The last straw was a few weeks ago when I realized that I couldn't easily read the on-screen program guide on the Direct TV service.

I'm getting the lens that corrects for astigmatism -- I hope it's worth it, as the Medicare Advantage plan I have doesn't cover anything but the basic vanilla lens so I have to pick up the balance ($$$).

At the moment, I can still read books on my ereader even without glasses as long as it's held about a foot from my eyes. I looking for an improvement there, also.

Anybody care to comment on their experiences with lens replacement?

Next up: hearing aids.  ;D


Mike
« Last Edit: August 07, 2014, 04:31:31 pm by jmiked »

KBoards.com

  • Advertisement
  • ***

    Offline Annalog

    • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
    • *******
    • Posts: 7083
    • Gender: Female
    • Arizona, USA
    • Goodbye, Mr. Milquetoast
      • View Profile
      • Origami Turtle's photostream
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #1 on: August 07, 2014, 04:59:08 pm »
    Several years ago DH had cataract surgery with lens replacement. It went very well. He went from extremely nearsighted in that eye (focal point about 1 inch without correction) to 20/30. It is important to follow the eye drop schedule. A few years later he needed the YAG laser surgery as the back of the capsule had clouded. That surgery took just a few minutes.

    Offline NogDog

    • Status: Isaac Asimov
    • ********
    • Posts: 10392
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #2 on: August 07, 2014, 05:06:13 pm »
    No tips/experiences, just best wishes for a smooth operation and recovery. :)

    Offline Gertie Kindle

    • Status: Shakespeare
    • **********
    • Posts: 26676
    • Gender: Female
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #3 on: August 07, 2014, 06:34:11 pm »
    I'm so wishing my cataracts would ripen to the point that I need the surgery. Not so bad, yet, but bad enough to be annoying.

    Best of luck to you. The surgery is almost routine and I'm sure you'll be happy with the results.


    Offline Ann in Arlington

    • Global Moderator
    • Status: Shakespeare
    • *****
    • Posts: 67107
    • Not a moderator and haven't ben one for a year.
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #4 on: August 07, 2014, 06:54:45 pm »
    I had a friend who had lens replacement relatively recently. She's MUCH happier now.  Doesn't even need contacts any more, though she's not got to get used to needing reading glasses sometimes. :D

    You'll be pleased, I think.
    My Kindles
    Hermoine's Handbag (Voyage)
    Ed's (Voyage Refurb)
    Bedtime Reading (Oasis 9)
    Godric's Hollow (Basic 7)
    My Tardis (PW 10)

    Offline spotsmom

    • Status: Dostoevsky
    • ******
    • Posts: 3419
    • Gender: Female
    • Sunriver, Oregon
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #5 on: August 07, 2014, 07:39:12 pm »
    I had my right eye done in February.  The next morning my vision was 20/15.  I have had zero problems since.  I would mention that many surgery centers want you to be "knocked out" for it, but my surgeon and I decided to just have me take a valium.  Lots of bright lights and flushing out of the eye but it didn't bother me at all.  You might want to look into that if you're not a fan of anesthesia. Doc felt that will be the standard in the next few years. 

    Am assuming your doc says you need the astigmatism one.  Don't just opt for it.  I have several friends who got it and did not have good results.  I believe the brandname is "Crystal" (at least phonetically). My doc says he will only use that particular one if someone specifically requests it. He also said he does not recommend the spendy lens if the patient really doesn't need it.  I have heard other docs are not quite so considerate. :D

    Yes, be sure to be extremely careful to follow the eye drop schedule!  I had to set my phone to go off so I'd remember!

    Good luck!  You will love it!

    Offline loonlover

    • Status: Jules Verne
    • *********
    • Posts: 21918
    • Gender: Female
    • Arkansas
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #6 on: August 08, 2014, 05:40:48 am »
    I had my first surgery three years ago and had the second eye done earlier this year. Both were easy and the results were very much worth it. I shouldn't have waited as long as I did for the second one. I did have a little more trouble with blurriness in the second eye, but that cleared up with the use of moisturizing eye drops along with the very important prescription ones. Timers were used here also for making sure I didn't miss a dose. I opted for the basic replacement lens and to continue to wear glasses.

    Good luck. You'll be amazed at the difference!

    Offline Mike D. aka jmiked

    • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
    • *******
    • Posts: 5087
    • Terra firma
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #7 on: August 08, 2014, 12:20:51 pm »
    I believe the brandname is "Crystal" (at least phonetically). My doc says he will only use that particular one if someone specifically requests it. He also said he does not recommend the spendy lens if the patient really doesn't need it.

    I think Cristalens(?) is the lens that has both distance and near correction (multivision?). I recall somebody remarking it was many thousands of dollars more than the standard one. The lens that was recommended for me is slightly more expensive than the standard one but when I get the other eye done, I would just need glasses for reading. It might be worth it, but I don't have any particular objection to wearing glasses most of the time.

    Mike

    Offline spotsmom

    • Status: Dostoevsky
    • ******
    • Posts: 3419
    • Gender: Female
    • Sunriver, Oregon
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #8 on: August 08, 2014, 12:26:35 pm »
    I think Cristalens(?) is the lens that has both distance and near correction (multivision?). I recall somebody remarking it was many thousands of dollars more than the standard one. The lens that was recommended for me is slightly more expensive than the standard one but when I get the other eye done, I would just need glasses for reading. It might be worth it, but I don't have any particular objection to wearing glasses most of the time.

    Mike
    I have heard that Cristalens is very expensive and does the multivision thing.  My friend who had it said it was not worth it, and he's had complications with the placement of it.  Not a happy camper.

    When it comes time to have my other eye done, I am going for monovision (close up in one eye, distance in the other).  Should help eliminate the need for glasses at all.

    Offline balaspa

    • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
    • *******
    • Posts: 6664
    • Gender: Male
    • Chicago, IL
      • View Profile
      • My website
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #9 on: August 08, 2014, 12:39:04 pm »
    Haven't had to have it so far. However, I wish you good luck and I hope it turns out OK.
    The new thriller TEXT is available now!

    Offline Mike D. aka jmiked

    • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
    • *******
    • Posts: 5087
    • Terra firma
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #10 on: August 08, 2014, 12:42:36 pm »

    When it comes time to have my other eye done, I am going for monovision (close up in one eye, distance in the other).  Should help eliminate the need for glasses at all.

    I think that's what the general plan is for me, but I'm not quite clear on the close up in one eye, distance in the other ramifications. I have a call in to the clinic to find out more.


    Mike

    Offline crebel

    • Status: Emily Dickinson
    • *******
    • Posts: 9085
    • Gender: Female
    • Ottumwa, Iowa
    • Member #1600 since January 15, 2009
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #11 on: August 08, 2014, 12:44:22 pm »
    Several years ago DH had cataract surgery with lens replacement. It went very well. He went from extremely nearsighted in that eye (focal point about 1 inch without correction) to 20/30. It is important to follow the eye drop schedule. A few years later he needed the YAG laser surgery as the back of the capsule had clouded. That surgery took just a few minutes.

    This was exactly my experience, although I was considered 'young' for needing cataract surgery in both eyes (only 50 when I had it).  I did NOT pay for the pricey astigmatism lenses even though I have astigmatism in both eyes.  My vision is corrected to 20/20 for distance in one and 20/30 in the other.  I went from wearing coke-bottle lensed glasses and being legally blind without them almost my entire life to wearing dollar store reading glasses for close work.  The surgery was easy, the results miraculous, IMHO.

    I also needed the YAG procedure in both eyes earlier this year - easy peasy if ever necessary.  Good luck!

    Offline spotsmom

    • Status: Dostoevsky
    • ******
    • Posts: 3419
    • Gender: Female
    • Sunriver, Oregon
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #12 on: August 08, 2014, 06:02:43 pm »
    I think that's what the general plan is for me, but I'm not quite clear on the close up in one eye, distance in the other ramifications. I have a call in to the clinic to find out more.


    Monovision isn't for everyone.  I know it will work for me because I've been wearing a close up contact in one eye for several years (with the other one perfect for long distance without a contact) and my eyes adjusted well.  Your doc should give you a contact to wear in the undone eye first to see if you can adjust to it.  Lots of folks can't.

    Online mlewis78

    • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
    • *******
    • Posts: 6065
    • Gender: Female
    • New York, NY
    • Member #3406
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #13 on: August 09, 2014, 12:54:28 pm »
    Jmiked, just wanted to wish you all the best for the 20th.  I don't know a lot about it, but a friend had it done with one eye in June.  Is the basic the option that Medicare covers completely?  My friend went with the option that cost $1400 because Medicare didn't cover.  She is going to have it done for the other eye in a few months.
    New York, NY
    Flutist, retired legal word processing operator
    Readers:  Oasis 2, Kindle Fire 8 HD Plus, Paperwhite 2 (2013) (gave away), Fire HDX 8.9" (won't hold a charge now), Fire HD6 (2014 pink), 2012 K4(black), K4(silver), KFHD 7", K3 that won't charge, Kindle DX (US), Sony PRS-350, B&N Nook STR and Bookeen Cybook Opus

    Offline jkent

    • Status: Madeleine L'Engle
    • **
    • Posts: 62
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #14 on: August 09, 2014, 02:30:41 pm »
    I had both eyes done with a six week interval between surgeries.  So easy.  I was awake with just a tranquilizer.  Healing is fast but the drops are critical, you don't want swelling or infection.  The difference pre and post surgery is big.  Colors are brighter and it is easier to read, although I still use glasses for close work.
    Good luck.

    Offline Jane917

    • Status: Dostoevsky
    • ******
    • Posts: 3615
    • Gender: Female
    • Ridgefield, WA
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #15 on: August 09, 2014, 06:35:41 pm »
    I have the very beginnings of cataracts, and my optometrist says it will be quite a few years before I need lens replacement. I am glad to hear there is a correction for astigmatism.

    As for hearing aids, go for them! I waited far too long.....and I have a MA in Speech Pathology and Audiology. I should have known better, but my audiologist has explained to me how well trained I am at figuring out what people say without really hearing it.
    Words with Friends: Jane917

     
    (Make your own reading bar)

    Offline BTackitt

    • Status: Emily Dickinson
    • *******
    • Posts: 9512
    • Texas, USA
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #16 on: August 09, 2014, 08:25:28 pm »
    I'm not quite clear on the close up in one eye, distance in the other ramifications.
    Mike

    When my second son was getting his driver's license about 5 years ago, he had to have his vision tested... THe doc said his eyes were naturally set one for distance and one for close up... and not to worry about it, because his brain was used to it, and that he usually had older patients pay him to make their eyes that way. He said that after the surgery for older patients, that the brain adapts very quickly to using one or the other eye depending on the situation, and that our son was lucky to already have it naturally.
    "If man has no tea in him, he is incapable of understanding truth and beauty." ~Japanese Proverb
    Screensaver Images: http://s684.photobucket.com/home/B_Tackitt/index

    Offline Andra

    • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
    • *******
    • Posts: 5997
    • Gender: Female
    • Austin, TX
    • madhouse escapee #671
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #17 on: August 11, 2014, 07:32:46 am »
    My dad had both of his eyes done this year, about 8 weeks apart.  I think the hardest thing for him was wearing the dark glasses for a few days whenever he went outside.
    As the others have mentioned, the drops are very important!  You might also ask at your surgery center if they have any samples of the really expensive ones.  Daddy has medicare and it didn't want to pay much on the drops, but he got samples after the first eye so he didn't have to refill the script for the second one.

    Offline spotsmom

    • Status: Dostoevsky
    • ******
    • Posts: 3419
    • Gender: Female
    • Sunriver, Oregon
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #18 on: August 11, 2014, 11:36:32 am »
    There are generics for all 3 of the drops. Eye doc told me to put the leftover drops in the fridge for eye number 2. The name brand stuff is ridiculously expensive.

    Offline Mike D. aka jmiked

    • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
    • *******
    • Posts: 5087
    • Terra firma
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #19 on: August 26, 2014, 09:35:41 am »
    I had the surgery on my right eye last week. Sure enough, it was a pretty simple procedure. I opted for the distance lens, which will take some getting used to, as I've been near-sighted all my life. I can watch now TV with my right eye without any glasses.  :o

    The only down side so far is that when I'm reading, there is a little flickering off to the right edge of my vision as my eye moves across the page, but research on the interweb suggests that the brain stands a good chance of becoming accustomed to this after a time.

    I have to admit that going without glasses gives me a slightly vulnerable feeling. I've always been wearing glasses during my waking hours for 55+ years.


    Mike

    Offline intinst

    • Status: Shakespeare
    • **********
    • Posts: 43324
    • Gender: Male
    • Shannon Hills, AR
    • 'just enough clouds to create a beautiful sunset
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #20 on: August 26, 2014, 10:04:33 am »
    I had the surgery on my right eye last week. Sure enough, it was a pretty simple procedure. I opted for the distance lens, which will take some getting used to, as I've been near-sighted all my life. I can watch now TV with my right eye without any glasses.  :o

    The only down side so far is that when I'm reading, there is a little flickering off to the right edge of my vision as my eye moves across the page, but research on the interweb suggests that the brain stands a good chance of becoming accustomed to this after a time.

    I have to admit that going without glasses gives me a slightly vulnerable feeling. I've always been wearing glasses during my waking hours for 55+ years.


    Mike
    I haven't had or needed cataract surgery (yet!), but I have been wearing contacts with the same mono vision setup as you are doing. Been doing it for nearly 20 years and I really like that I don't have to wear bi-focal glasses by doing this. You will get used to it soon! If (when, probably) I'll choose the same way for lenses.
    A great many people now reading and writing would be better employed keeping rabbits.  Edith Sitwell 
    Your work is to keep cranking the flywheel that turns the gears that spin the belt in the
    engine of belief that keeps you and your desk in midair. Annie Dillard

         Located just outside Little Rock, Arkansas

    Offline NogDog

    • Status: Isaac Asimov
    • ********
    • Posts: 10392
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #21 on: August 26, 2014, 10:25:07 am »
    Glad to hear that so far, so good.  ;D

    Offline spotsmom

    • Status: Dostoevsky
    • ******
    • Posts: 3419
    • Gender: Female
    • Sunriver, Oregon
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #22 on: August 26, 2014, 11:07:59 am »
    After the surgery, I started seeing small "arcs" of bright light to the top right of my eye.  The doctor said it could be a huge problem requiring immediate attention and to pay attention to it.  I went in and he checked everything and said I was ok, but if I got bigger arcs or started seeing floaters to call him immediately (even in the middle of the night).  He said it should go away after a few weeks (which it did). So I'm not sure if that's what you're talking about in regards to "flickering", but if it is be sure the doc knows about it.

    Ain't vision grand??

    Offline Mike D. aka jmiked

    • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
    • *******
    • Posts: 5087
    • Terra firma
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #23 on: October 16, 2014, 10:00:31 am »
    I had the surgery on my other eye yesterday. The new lens has not settled in yet, but having both eyes with the new lenses is a revelation. I got the lenses that correct for astigmatism, so I will be able to ride my bicycle and drive a car without wearing glasses for the first time in 50+ years (after the new lens settles in, of course). I may have to wear half-glasses for reading the car instrument panel, though. It will be a bit fuzzy otherwise. I still need corrective lenses for anything under about six feet.

    The first eye I had done had uncorrected vision of 20/100 and this one had 20/60 or so. The first eye now has about 20/25 (although I could read one or two letters on the 20/15 line). I hope the second eye will be similar, although it will take several weeks to settle into its final state.

    One of the four types of eye drops I have to use for the next several weeks is really expensive, almost $200 for a tiny, tiny bottle. The surgeon gave me a sample bottle to get me through the regimen for the second eye (thanks, Doc).

    I'm still in the mind-set that moving closer to something will bring it into better focus. It won't. I need to undo a habit of 50 years. One unexpected advantage of the new lenses is that I can watch TV while leaned back a bit in my recliner. Previously this would have had me looking through the bottom part of my trifocals. This meant poorer vision than without my glasses. The couch potato wins again!

    A distinct benefit of modern technology.


    Mike

    Offline crebel

    • Status: Emily Dickinson
    • *******
    • Posts: 9085
    • Gender: Female
    • Ottumwa, Iowa
    • Member #1600 since January 15, 2009
      • View Profile
    Re: Cataract surgery
    « Reply #24 on: October 16, 2014, 10:06:32 am »
    I had the surgery on my other eye yesterday. The new lens has not settled in yet, but having both eyes with the new lenses is a revelation. I got the lenses that correct for astigmatism, so I will be able to ride my bicycle and drive a car without wearing glasses for the first time in 50+ years (after the new lens settles in, of course). I may have to wear half-glasses for reading the car instrument panel, though. It will be a bit fuzzy otherwise. I still need corrective lenses for anything under about six feet.

    The first eye I had done had uncorrected vision of 20/100 and this one had 20/60 or so. The first eye now has about 20/25 (although I could read one or two letters on the 20/15 line). I hope the second eye will be similar, although it will take several weeks to settle into its final state.

    One of the four types of eye drops I have to use for the next several weeks is really expensive, almost $200 for a tiny, tiny bottle. The surgeon gave me a sample bottle to get me through the regimen for the second eye (thanks, Doc).

    I'm still in the mind-set that moving closer to something will bring it into better focus. It won't. I need to undo a habit of 50 years. One unexpected advantage of the new lenses is that I can watch TV while leaned back a bit in my recliner. Previously this would have had me looking through the bottom part of my trifocals. This meant poorer vision than without my glasses. The couch potato wins again!

    A distinct benefit of modern technology.


    Mike

    I had both eyes done 4 years ago and I still try to pull things closer to see better.  You're correct, it doesn't work anymore, but a habit of 50 years is not an easy one to break!  I'm glad everything has gone so well for you.

    KBoards.com

    • Advertisement
    • ***