Friday, September 10, 2010

Cataract "canyon"

I had known for over a year that I was eventually going to need to have a cataract removed in my left eye. The retinal detachment that occurred in April of 2009 made it likely that a cataract would form within a few months and that it would impair my vision more and more until I couldn't stand it any longer and had it removed and replaced with a plastic lens.

For the last several months, the feeling of cloudedness, of a kind of weightiness in my left eye had been growing, impairing my night vision particularly with its refracting of headlights into starbursts and halos. My right eye was doing so much more of the work that it was often tired and grouchy. I was ready for whatever the surgery might bring.

But I was also wary. A few folks in my congregation had had complications----infection, double vision, even a lens "misplant"---though most reported wonderful results. Which side of the line would I end up on? I couldn't tell for sure, though I knew that the retinal detachment made my surgery somewhat more delicate.

Now, two days later, I am amazed at the clarity of the vision in my left eye. It's so dramatically better---not only in focus but in colors revealed now that the cloudy lens is clear again---that my right eye is a bit confused and trying to get used to the fact that it's no longer doing more work than the left eye. Also, the left eye does not have a multifocal replacement lens, only a regular one; the right eye uses a multifocal contact lens or a bifocal spectacle lens.

Until I get the right lens removed, which should happen within a month or so because there's a bit of a cataract on that one too, I will be using a combination of vision aids, because only my left eye will need a reading lens for now; after the second surgery, the right eye will need it too, but until then, I've got a multifocal contact lens.

I've taken my regular specs over to the optometrist to get a plain glass lens inserted on the left side; that will make it easier to cope during the month-long period before the second surgery when I can't wear my contact lens in my right eye. (The reason for this is that the cornea's shape is affected by a gas-perm lens and needs time to revert to its natural shape---about two weeks before the measurements of the eye and then two more weeks until the surgery.)

Of course, this is all happening during the busiest part of my year but somehow all the events---the meetings, the sermons, the Bayview Sound performances---are dovetailing pretty well and I haven't had to miss anything just yet. We'll see how the rest of it progresses!


LinguistFriend said...

It is fascinating how the eyes work together, partly as a central effect in the brain rather than a peripheral one. I suspect that if you had little depth perception, like me, with the eyes not working together, you would have an easier time. I hope that I will not find out.

Miss Kitty said...

Whoa! I don't check in at the Saloon & Roadshow for a few weeks, and I come back and look what's happened! :-)

Glad to know your vision has improved so dramatically in such a short time, and that so far you've had no complications. You and your "new" eye are in my thoughts and prayers.

ms. kitty said...

Thanks, Miss K, for all four (or was it five?) comments in the past few hours!