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OT: Cataract surgery and lenses?

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  • OT: Cataract surgery and lenses?

    I am having the first of two cataract surgeries next week and got a lot of pre-op info about choosing various lens types.

    Insurance (I am 60yo & too young for Medicare) covers the single-focus basic lens after deductibles. There are lots of other options for multi-focus 1) is kind of like progressive eyeglass lenses or 2) putting one close and one distance lens in opposite eyes and letting the brain sort it out. The progressive cataract lens is about $1500/each eye, but if it freed me from glasses it would only take 3 Rx glasses to pay that off.

    Any O.F. with experience or advice out there? I like lots of visual clarity, am too ugly to be vain, and don't mind glasses after 45 years of wearing them.

    Please no horror stories; I researched this doc before scheduling.

    I don't think this is related to the little bit of hobby welding I do with a good Jackson hood. Just in the genes.

    Thanks in advance!
    Garfish

  • #2
    Originally posted by garfish View Post
    Insurance (I am 60yo & too young for Medicare) covers the single-focus basic lens after deductibles. There are lots of other options for multi-focus 1) is kind of like progressive eyeglass lenses or 2) putting one close and one distance lens in opposite eyes and letting the brain sort it out. The progressive cataract lens is about $1500/each eye, but if it freed me from glasses it would only take 3 Rx glasses to pay that off.
    Not direct experience with cataract stuff, but it might help...

    My wife had lasik done to her eyes. One was tuned for distance,
    the other for near. Worked fine for a while, but her eyes continued to
    change and she now uses reading glasses (cheap ones from the drug store
    work fine -- no expensive rx). Her closeup vision is still better than it
    was before the lasik, though.

    I have progressive bifocals. I hate them. I just do not like the fact
    that a chunk of my vision field is always blurred... I also do not like
    the fact that I have to hold my head "just so" to look at something
    at a specific distance...

    Hope this gives you some help

    Hope that the procedures go ok

    Frank

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    • #3
      Garfish, I had mine done last year. I went with the single vision lenses, right eye for distance and left eye for close-up. I have had zero issues with the eyes, and did a little welding and some plasma cutting this week with no problems. The only time I use reading glasses is in the shop or under the dash of a car, where there isn't a lot of light and/or contrast on what I am trying to read.

      I would save the money spent on the progressive lenses. There are no guarantees with either type that you won't need glasses for reading. Good luck with whatever route you take.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by cope View Post
        I went with the single vision lenses, right eye for distance and left eye for close-up.
        Cope- Which is in your dominant eye, the close or distance? thanks.
        Garfish

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        • #5
          I had lasik done in the mid-90s when it was relatively new. Got both eyes tuned for normal distance. At 58 now I use 2 diopter reading glasses and a 2 diop cheater under the hood. It was expected with old-phart status.

          A friend had the split-distance lasik and he gripes a little but that's his nature. Mine have diverged a bit and it's noticeable but not bothersome. Tried bifocal safety glasses while working on tiny electronics at work and really don't like them. If straight reading glasses won't do it I'd rather use a stereo microscope.
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          • #6
            Originally posted by garfish View Post
            Cope- Which is in your dominant eye, the close or distance? thanks.
            Distance (right)

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            • #7
              I haven't had cataract surgery, but I am nearsighted with astigmatism in my right (dominant) eye. For years my eye doctor has ground my left lens straight (-diopter) with my right lens reversed (+ diopter) and a - astigmitism correction (cylinder). It's unusual, but it gives me 20/15 corrected. I can read the numbers on contact lens boxes in his office from 10 feet. I also have the single bifocal. I'm seen many accounts of decreased pheripheal vision and decreased night vision (star effects, etc) with progressive. Since I have decreased night vision anyway (heriditary) I stay away from progressives.
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              • #8
                Follow up

                Here is a follow up. I was not a candidate for the multifocal lens, so I opted for the single distance vision only lens. They wouldn't put in the one close/one far unless I previously had had that type of arrangement with contacts to know I could adapt and apparently there are depth of field issues with that set-up.

                That was Monday. I took the next day off work to let my eye settle down, but they say you can go back to work the next day. My thought was, why rush it?; this needs to last for a couple decades and I wanted it to heal well. I have pretty amazing distance vision now, but NO close usable vision (cannot read book size type). That'll have to be fixed with glasses later. Have the next eye done in about 5 weeks. Lots of drops (8 per day) and the Rx's were pricey ($115 after insurance).

                So far so good. Happy so far. Thanks for all the responses earlier.
                Garfish

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by garfish View Post
                  Here is a follow up. I was not a candidate for the multifocal lens, so I opted for the single distance vision only lens. They wouldn't put in the one close/one far unless I previously had had that type of arrangement with contacts to know I could adapt and apparently there are depth of field issues with that set-up.

                  That was Monday. I took the next day off work to let my eye settle down, but they say you can go back to work the next day. My thought was, why rush it?; this needs to last for a couple decades and I wanted it to heal well. I have pretty amazing distance vision now, but NO close usable vision (cannot read book size type). That'll have to be fixed with glasses later. Have the next eye done in about 5 weeks. Lots of drops (8 per day) and the Rx's were pricey ($115 after insurance).

                  So far so good. Happy so far. Thanks for all the responses earlier.
                  Yes, the eye drops get old in a hurry. I caught my Dr. at just the right time, and got all of my meds free. Once it is all said and done, you may find that your eyes get dry easier, and you may also find dried up crud in them. A warm, dampened was cloth held over your eyes will help. Also, get a bottle of artificial tears.

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                  • #10
                    I had RK done in the early 90's to improve distance vision. It removed my corrective lenses restriction on my DL.

                    The doctor told me at that time that after 40, close up vision begins to deteriorate in everyone. But, since I had now tuned my eyes for distance, I was going to lose my near vision a few years younger. The upside is that I wouldn't need prescription glasses, just cheap drugstore magnifiers.

                    He was right on the money. To this day, I can still see pretty good for distance, but I need reading glasses for close up stuff.

                    I've got no complaints, and this was RK, before they used lasers for LASIK. LASIK is even better, with less scar tissue on the cornea.

                    Greg
                    The truth is out there, but the server's not responding.

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                    • #11
                      The 411 for the OF's looking at cataract surgery. I had both eyes done in about a month last fall. The most striking difference is that I can see clearly now vs. the cloudy cataracts. I got the single focus lenses because that is what I could afford. What I didn't hear or understand pre-op was that I would go from being moderately near-sighted (could get around w/o glasses and read with a little difficulty) to being very far-sighted after the surgery.

                      With glasses my vision is about 20/25 all around, but w/o glasses I cannot read a book or a pill bottle. It has been an adjustment and I now have a dozen pairs of $8 drug store readers around the house. The new glasses are progressives and my correction is pretty strong. This was a surprise to me, too. The little channel where the correction is is tiny narrow, so I look directly at what I want to see or it is blurred. Without the surgery I'd be almost blind now. The post-op situation was a surprise in many ways tho. Heads up to talk to the surgeon so you understand what the lenses are doing post-op. Overall I am blessed that I can see.
                      Garfish

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                      • #12
                        Today with new technology success rate of cataract surgery is very high. I want to tell you that light sensitive after cataract surgery is common and your eye get normal in a day. No fear at all.
                        Last edited by Hobart Expert; 09-15-2020, 09:19 AM. Reason: removing link to potential spam

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by dorthea View Post
                          Today with new technology success rate of cataract surgery is very high. I want to tell you that light sensitive after cataract surgery is common and your eye get normal in a day. No fear at all.
                          I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt here, replying to 8 year old posts is going to get you flagged for spam, especially when linking to external websites.

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                          • #14
                            The OP here. Interesting this thread was revived 9 years later. What I learned is - Yes, light sensitivity decreases in about a year or so. I now have dry-eye per Cope's post and if it is just age related or related to the surgery can't be known. Use a Rx for it that I couldn't afford w/o insurance.

                            What I'd do different? My then eye doctor sent me to a regional high-volume eye center for the work. My thought was they do dozens per week and will have the procedure down pat (there were 11 patients in pre-op with me that afternoon) vs. going with one of my local small town ophthalmologists who do a 2 or 3 cataracts a week maybe. Probably was a wrong assumption.

                            The 4 diopter shift in vision was probably a mistake made by the eye center by an overworked technician lining up surgery lens set-ups and was not double checked by the MD. Other eye doctors have said as much. I have heard two other stories of similar mistakes there. Like anything, high volume production can mean high error numbers. Later the implant in the dominant eye de-centered and now the best corrected vision is 20/40 in that eye.

                            I am grateful the technology overall kept me from going blind. If I had to do it again I'd have taken myself to a local ophthalmologist for the work. Any surgery is playing the odds, so who knows? Like Bogey said, "Here's looking at you kid." YMMV.
                            Garfish

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