Wednesday, September 11, 2013

My LASIK Experience - Pre-Surgery

I had LASIK eye surgery yesterday!  I was nearsighted and I hated glasses, so I mainly wore contacts. My contacts had a prescription of -3.75 in the right eye and -4.00 in the left eye.  Yes, that's pretty strong!  I had always wanted LASIK surgery, but waited for my budget to allow it.

Then in my 30's suddenly I started seeing double.  Not all the time, just when my eyes were stressed.  I look at computer screens most of the day for my day job, when I'm not here on the farm doing farm duty.  My opthamologist said I had a strabismus problem, which involves the eye muscles.  Both eyes were fighting with each other, causing double vision and causing my eyes to turn.  He said my eye muscles were very tight, which caused this issue.  I think the eyes visibly turned outward, but I don't know, I never looked in the mirror when it happened.  I just knew it was terrible and scared me to see double.  It also affected my depth perception.  When your vision starts messing up, that's serious business!

Anyway, I ended up having 2 strabismus surgeries in one and a half years.  After the first surgery I was so happy, but a few months later the double vision returned, eventually making me have another surgery.  Strabismus surgery is serious stuff.  First of all, I was the only adult in the eye hospital on both occasions; most strabismus patients are children.  I figured if the kids could go through it, so could I!  The patient is knocked out, the eye muscles, which are located behind the white of the eye, are cut and tightened, and the patient is left with stitches in the whites of their eyes.  After surgery the eyes feel like a piece of hard plastic is left behind, because it is (the stitches), and it hurts very much to move the eyes.  Recovery takes up to a week.  I had to go back and have the stitches cut out each time after surgery.  It wasn't that bad because I was so happy to be able to see straight after the surgeries, and I forgot about the pain, as is normal.  I still needed glasses, but I didn't see double and the depth perception was perfect again.

If I can go through that TWICE I can do a simple LASIK procedure. I waited about 5 years after my last strabismus to make sure I had no more muscle issues and then signed up for LASIK.  Finally, no more contacts!  Finally I will be able to wake up and see.  Finally I can swim and shower without worrying.  I wont have to spend time every morning and evening messing with contacts.  Ahhh, eye freedom.

I was very nervous the day before surgery.  I Googled LASIK eye surgery and attempted to watch a video on YouTube of an actual surgery.  If you haven't had the surgery and plan on it, don't watch the YouTube LASIK videos, it's too gory.  When they started pressing down on the eyeball and it left indentations in the eyeball I had to stop it.  Ugh, that would be my eye soon enough.  I didn't ever finish watching it.

I stopped wearing contacts 2 weeks prior to surgery, as the eye doc requested.  My miserable glasses were dusted off.  The week before surgery I started on an eye drop regime.  Refresh Plus was put in my eyes 4 times a day and Muro 5% ointment was put in the eyes at bedtime.  The Refresh Plus felt refreshing, it's just an over the counter eye drop.  The Muro 5%, also OTC, was a heavy ointment which was squeezed into the lower lids at bedtime and was like putting Vaseline into the eyes.  It was kinda nasty, but really lubricated the eyes.  In the mornings my eyes were all greasy.

One day prior to surgery I added Zymaxid, an antibiotic drop, and Bromday, an anti-inflammatory.  Zymaxid was four times a day and Bromday twice a day.  Both were prescription drops.  I made up a spreadsheet to organize my eye drop regime.  And after surgery there were more drops!

My next post will go over the surgery so those of you considering it will know what's going to happen.  I think it helps to read about LASIK surgery prior to having it to understand what to expect.  I know I read some other people's accounts and it helped me to be less nervous.  My biggest fear was being awake through the procedure, plus I was afraid my eyes were going to have a strabismus issue during the surgery and suddenly turn one way or the other when the laser was on them.  I didn't have strabismus issues anymore, but the concern was in my mind since I had that problem before.


John Going Gently said...

Hope all goes well. In the long run xxx

Farm Girl said...

Well I had been thinking about but sitting here reading just this much made me think, I will just live with glasses. :) I think it would be nice to see again all of the time, but I am so terrified of surgeries on my eyes that I think that stops me. My husband has had 3 surgeries now and when they stitched up his eye last time and then he had to go back to have them removed. Lets say, I am a total coward. I am glad you did so well and I can't wait to read about the surgery itself.

Carol said...

Congratulations! I had surgery(PRK...RKP not sure) before the laser was approved---wonderful until I got older and needed reading glasses. Our son had a difficult time wearing contacts and had lasik. In fact he chose the surgery instead of a new truck---saved us $:-). How are your chickens? I really enjoy reading about your animals!

Dog Trot Farm said...

Congratulations, you've got the worst behind you. How terrible it must be to see double. Hope your recovery was quick. I too hate wearing glasses, simply because I can never find them when I need to...

Gail said...

Freedom!!! Congratulations.

Razzberry Corner said...

Thanks John!!

Kim - You should do it! The pain is well worth the benefits!

Carol - I don't blame your son for wanting LASIK, it smart he had it done at a young age so he can enjoy perfect vision his whole life!

My chickens are all fine! I'll have to post about them again soon - the chicks are all grown up! Big Bird is crowing!

Julie - Yes it was terrible to see double! That was the worst!

Gail - yes, freedom at last! :)


tara said...

I'm so sorry to hear your husband had such a hard time! Makes me worry but still, I know family members who all loved the lasik they had.

Lasik Surgeons San Antonio said...

It’s hard to find knowledgeable people regarding but you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks for sharing this with others.