My vitrectomy, and no, it had nothing to do with sex!

Discussion in 'Health and Wellness Forum' started by leejosepho, Apr 21, 2013.

  1. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    About 5 years ago, my optometrist said she could make my vision no better because I was developing "macular pucker with epiretinal membrane" in both eyes. In different terms, it is like the "film" at the backs of my "cameras" had begun bulging forward while being covered by cloudy, wrinkled tissue...and that makes telephone poles look like vertical snakes while making all things distorted and fuzzy. Two weeks ago, the corrected vision in my left eye was 20/70, and the corrected vision in my right eye was 20/100.

    Three days ago, a great doctor who is a true artist went inside my right eye and removed the membrane, floaters and vitreous fluid, then did a little laser work and filled my eye about halfway with some kind of fluid...and that left an air bubble to push the retina and macula back to flat as I remain face-down for a week. Right now as I look down, it is like looking through a cloudy fish bowl, and I can see the fluid level at the center of my vision when I look straight forward. Two days ago, I could see nothing but a big blur, then my hand began to appear...and now I can see the creases in my palm and my length of vision and focus in my repaired eye has grown from 3" to 6". I see the doc again at the end of this week, and he and I are both quite optimistic about my future eyesight.

    Sleeping face-down is a bit of a challenge, and I do that by placing my face in a catcher's mask to have some room for breathing while laying on a long tapered pillow!

    Just wanted to tell somebody...
  2. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

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    Was that a pun?

    Decades ago, one of my sons suffered exposure and severe frostbite to his ears. I made him a donut shaped pillow so that he could sleep without putting pressure on his ears.
  3. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    Good move on the special pillow. For whatever reason, nothing had been said to me about "durable equipment" ahead of time, but I went looking to try to prepare since I already knew I would have trouble sleeping face-down. My worst problem, however, turned out to be extreme pain in my neck and shoulders from sitting with my head hanging during the day...so I tied a walker and a chair together and began using my cane as a headrest!

    facedown2.jpg
  4. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    I love people's inventions and it sounds like you done well! I am hoping for you Lee, and, sounds like your motivation will get your through it all, and up to snuff. Keep us abreast on how you are doing.
  5. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    An outfit in Texas wanted $60.00 plus $20.00 shipping for a couple of 8" mirrors set up for face-down viewing (TV, etc.), but I got out of the auto parts store with these West Coast beauties for only $30.00!

    facedown3.jpg

    The air bubble in my repaired eye has nearly dissipated, and I can tell the vision there is headed toward becoming much better than it has been in a long time. I do not need to read street signs to take my sidecar rig for a ride, but it sure will be nice to again be able to see traffic lights from more that a hundred feet away!
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2013
  6. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    How you doing Lee?
  7. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    Going to see the doc again this morning for a followup, and I think all is going well. My repaired eye can now almost distinguish large characters on my computer screen, and telephone poles are beginning to appear a bit straighter! Macular pucker is like having wrinkled film at the back of the camera, and making it flat again has been the purpose of the bubble in my eye that is a now nearly dissipated.
  8. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    Lee, that is great news! Nothing worse than having something to go wrong with your eyes. Good luck today, try not to worry and keep those positive thoughts. Let us know Lee.
  9. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    Now, for what this is worth, I know very little about it, I read where Google is coming out with, " Google Glasses," glasses with a computer in them.
  10. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    I don't know much about the glasses, but, I thought they might help seeing better if the computer was closer up. I hope I didn't say something wrong Lee. Hope all is well.
  11. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    No, you said nothing wrong, Cookie! All is well. Those "Google Glasses" look interesting since I spend most of my day online, but one guy said he got a headache from continually looking top-right to see the display. So, please do let me know if you might happen across one of those visors like Geordi La Forge wore in Star Trek: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geordi_La_Forge!
  12. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    I am glad, lol. I was worried, :) Since, I know very little about them, then, I started to read about them, and saw an article about not wearing them in the mens room, LOL. That is probably sound advice. I remember him on Star Trek.
  13. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    My repaired eye is coming along slowly, and yesterday a doc ordered some new glasses for me that will bring that eye from 20/400 to 20/80 (and my other eye up to 20/40). The cataract I had been told would form as a result of the surgery is present and growing, but it might be another six months before that gets bad enough for needing to have it removed.
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2013
  14. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    20/80 is pretty good Lee, and 20/40 is really good. I am glad to hear it is coming along even if slowly. Just imagine how great it will be when it is all finished for you.
  15. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    I sometimes wonder whether all of this will ever end, but I thank you!

    I have been wearing thick, glass trifocals for many years, but yesterday I got my new thick, plastic single-vision lenses for distance. The doc and I agreed single-vision lenses would be best since that is less-expensive and they will likely need to be replaced in possibly as few as three months. These new lenses do not help much over the old ones for watching TV, but now I can actually read speed limit signs and such before passing them! My new lenses for closeup viewing here at the screen should be here next week, but these are useable here for now as long as the contrast between print and background is high.
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2013
  16. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    It is going to get better, you will see, you got to believe... You mentioned glasses, which made me think of something, and as I sit here, I got to laugh, because, my husband and I had exactly, the same eye glass prescription, and we both had the same astigmatism, too. I am actually, wearing his glasses right now, lol. I got them all over the house because it is a nuisance to have to find them. I lose my glasses all the time. I have one of those kids autograph books from growing up, you know maybe, where each year the teacher would write something nice? well, mine all said the same thing, " where are your glasses?"
  17. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    One of my eye doctors said something similar a few weeks ago in relation to my upcoming cataract surgery. I had been told the vitrectomy would cause a cataract, but now I actually have a cataract in each eye and my regular doctor wants me to see a cardiologist before giving me medical clearance for the cataract surgery. Go figure! He tried to BS me a bit about an irregularity in my EKG, then said, "Oh, I did not know you already knew about that!" when I told him what it was. But, I had been wanting to see a cardiologist anyway since it has been a while.

    More in about a month, I hope...

    PS: Following the vitrectomy, my right eye now sees things about 20% narrower and taller than they actually are and as the other eye sees them, so now I tend to lead with the left eye!
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2013
  18. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    Maybe that's how my little brother sees things. He always sets his TV so that everybody looks wider than they are.
    I believe my older sister had the cataract surgery, and she's better now.
  19. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    Good deal. These past few months have shown me how much I had always taken clear vision for granted, and it can be a challenge to not let the difficulties of poor vision come out in attitudes that can only make things worse for everyone. I will be in the cardiologist's catheterization lab in a couple of hours as part of getting medical clearance for the cataract surgeries that are scheduled for the 8th and 22nd of this calendar month.
  20. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    I have just recently heard of Shaw lenses for dealing with that kind of thing and more, and I will likely be getting some in a few weeks after my eyes having stabilized from the cataract surgeries I have just had:
    http://shawlens.com/aniseikonia/aniseikonia_solved/
    If your brother wears glasses already, maybe suggest he investigate those the next time he needs to replace them.

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