Saturday, April 20, 2013

Lasik Follow-up

Sporting the sexy eye-wear I had to wear all day yesterday and for the first 5 nights after surgery
Bright and early yesterday morning, I went in to the eye doctor for my Lasik procedure. There are several different methods available, but because my corneas are so thin, I had to have the all-laser procedure. For my eyes, they cut a flap in my eye with a laser, and then used a different laser to shape my eye. Another procedure is available that uses a blade to cut the flap instead of a laser. 

I was told not to wear any perfume or anything scented (like lotion), and no makeup the day of the surgery. When I arrived at the office, I was fitted with a hairnet and then a series of eye drops were put in to disinfect and numb my eyes. I was also given Valium to calm my nerves. (Thank goodness because my heart was racing!)

The laser procedure didn't take very long at all. In fact, the shaping of each eye took only 47 seconds per eye (I know this because one of the surgeon assistants counted down in 10 second increments.) Have you ever seen the movie Clockwork Orange, and there's the part where they hold the guy's eyes open with the metal eyelid openers? I had those yesterday. I even asked the doctor "Do I look like the guy from Clockwork Orange?", and surprisingly he knew what I was talking about.

The worst parts of the procedure were the sounds the laser made. The Hubs could hear it out in the waiting room. It made really loud clicks. And when my eyes were being reshaped, the room smelled like burnt hair (or burnt eye?). 

Immediately after surgery I was able to see better. My eyesight before the surgery was -7.75 in my right eye and -8.25 in my left eye. My doctor said legally blind is 20/200 and my sight was 3/200. 

To give you an idea of what my eyesight was like... This is not a joke. 

Prior to surgery, without contacts or glasses
Before surgery, I could make out colors but not shapes. I could only see clearly for the first 6-8 inches from my face and then everything was blurry.
Immediately after surgery
Right after surgery, I could make out shapes, but it felt like I was looking through safety glasses with smudges on them.
Today, and also prior to surgery if wearing contacts or glasses
This morning I went in for a followup and my vision is at 20/20. My doctor said my sight will continue to improve over the next several weeks to months.

Right now I also experience a halo effect when looking at a light or reflective road signs at night. The road signs look like someone is standing right behind them with a spotlight. That will diminish as my eyes heal.

I'm currently on an antibiotic eye drop  a steroid eye drop and artificial tears. I can't ride a motorcycle or swim for the next two weeks. I also have to keep water out of my eyes when showering, and keep dust out of my eyes when working outside. 

Curious about cost? 
Since I had to do the all-laser procedure, the surgery was $4,700. This included pre-op procedures, the surgery, post-op follow-up visits for a year, any touch-ups for 2 years, taxes, and some medications. The eye drops cost about $100 after insurance.
However, I received a $300 discount for being an Anthem insurance member. 
And I have Aflac supplemental vision insurance that will reimburse me $480. 
Total cost out of pocket: $3,920 + eye drops

In comparison... My employer doesn't offer vision insurance so my contacts and glasses came out of my own pocket, usually in the range of $500-$800 every year. I usually purchased a year's worth of contacts, and only updated my glasses every 2-3 years because I didn't wear them as often.  This surgery will pay for itself in 5 years. 

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...