Diary of My Cataract Surgery, Chapter 1

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Diary of My Cataract Surgery/Procedure

Tab: Health

Topic: Cataract Surgery, Chapter 1

Please note that this is my personal experience, not the way it should be or has to be, etc.  It is the recounting of my situation and how I dealt with it.  Thanks - MJ

About a year ago, I had a regular eye checkup, with my optometrist.  He is a forward thinking progressive type of person, and believes in new methods to diagnose eye conditions.  I really trust his advice. 

After he checked my eyes, he asked how things were looking and I told him that after thirty-five years of staring at a computer screen all day, every day, my eyes were tired.  I had eye strain, which he knew, and he had already advised ocular vitamin/food supplements, which I was taking and still take today.  Upon occasion, I would not see a miss-key of a word, and focusing on my jewelry clasps or sewing needle was definitely more difficult.  Also, glare from snow and oncoming headlights was much more bothersome than in ‘younger’ years.

He then told me that he could see a cataract in both of my eyes and that one was worse than the other.  Luckily, the worst was in my weakest eye, so the normal plan for scheduling surgery is “Do the worst first”, I would be able to fix the weaker eye and then assess the other eye, which did not appear as bad.  He said the whole thing could be postponed or addressed immediately.  I wanted to think about it, and the thought of eye surgery secretly terrified me. 

On the other hand, I have worn glasses or contact lenses since late grade school, and I would love to get rid of them, especially in my weaker eye.  As a note, most people’s eyes are relatively similar, whether they are nearsighted or farsighted or whatever.  Not me, however.  My left eye is significantly worse than my right, so the right is my dominant eye and does most of the work of seeing – for me.

I then went back to work, and got involved in all the priorities of daily work life and just put the whole situation on the back burner.  I told myself it wasn’t that bad.  I retired, got more sleep, and my eyes felt better. 

At the next checkup, there was a special machine to take pictures of the inside of my eyes.  When the pictures were displayed on a computer screen, Dr. B  explained all the parts and the colors.  I could see the cataracts, which was pretty disappointing to my ego.  By that, I mean that we all want to think we are not deteriorating as we age --- but time does pass on, and my cataracts did arrive. 

I decided to go ahead and fix the ‘worst eye first’.  Dr. B gathered quite a bit of medical information, my insurance details and the appointment with the surgeon was set.  The costs involved for this part were the regular exam (which was submitted to Medicare and the Medicare Supplement insurance ) which had a $15 co-pay, and the special machine to look into my eyes, which was $36 more ‘out of pocket’.  By the way, ‘out of pocket’ means that the person pays for them, in addition to any other charges for service.  They are not covered by insurance, neither by Medicare nor a supplement to Medicare.   

Please see Chapter 2 for the next step of this rChance Health story. We hope that my story helps yours!

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