Old folk at lunch

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

An ophthalmological encounter



I bet you can't spell that hard word in my heading. Look aside and write it down now and see how you go.

Did you get two letters 'h' in it? It's tricky.

Anyway, last Monday (15th) I had the cataracted lens in my right eye replaced by a plastic one: An "interocular lens implant". So if you now call me "Old Mr. Plastic Eye", I can't object. Vision in that eye had got so blurry that I was squinting a lot to block it out.

The procedure went "very, very well" according to the ophthalmic surgeon, so rapid healing will hopefully ensue. The private clinic I went to could not imaginably be better, I think. Private medicine in Australia is very, very good -- as good as public medicine is bad. Yet my private health insurer is covering 100% of the charges from the clinic and from the anesthetist but I have to pay something towards the fees of the surgeon.

I was in and out quite rapidly and experienced only minimal pain and discomfort. I got the dressings off the morning after and my eye was pretty red and watery that day. It is now Wednesday evening as I write this and most of the redness and watering is now gone. My eyes are normally a bit bloodshot these days so the eye in fact looks normal. And the vision in my transformed eye was remarkably good from the moment the dressings came off. I no longer squint!

The ophthalmologist -- Kleinschmidt of Porter Eye Care -- went to a lot of trouble to make sure he had a lens that would be just right for me and he seems to have done a first class job of that.

The only odd thing was that he started operating at a Godforsaken hour in the morning. I had to be at the clinic before 7am. As I usually get up around 9am that was a bit of a wrench. Joe drove me in so that was a bit heroic from him too as he tends to be a late riser as well. The clinic is at Mt Gravatt where Joe lives so he at least had a short trip back to bed.

Paul picked me up after the procedure at about 9am and stayed with me for the rest of the day until Anne got home from work at about 5pm. It is apparently strongly recommended that you have someone with you for the whole of the day after a procedure. I was not very strongly affected by the sedatives they pumped into me so had only a short nap while Paul worked away on his laptop. Paul spent quite a lot of time looking at some computer problems I have so that was very useful.

Paul and I also had a lot of chats about family matters so I caught up on some news. Paul is very family-oriented so keeps tabs on what is going on.

All that is now outstanding is for the incision to heal through which the new lens was implanted but all signs are that that is proceeding apace. I always heal well so I expected no problems there, barring accidents.

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