Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Vision Quest:I

Day 1
On Monday November 7th, I underwent PRK (photorefractive keratectomy). I got tired of juggling my multiple glasses during riding and life in general. I looked at a couple of places and decided on Hoopes Vision for my procedure. Hoopes was not necessarily the most convenient nor did they really have the best price, but they did provide the greatest piece of mind.
After enduring a couple of hours worth of tests and evaluations, Dr. McIntosh indicated that they felt I would not be a good candidate for the more common InterLase procedure. Essentially, they would prefer not to make a flap due to my "irregular" corneas. Thus, they recommended the InterLase predecessor, PRK. PRK has a longer recovery and is potentially more painful. Yeah!
Chris brought me in on Monday morning and we joked around during pre-op. I got some valium, that did not seem to have any noticeable effect. There was a quick evaluation of my sight again. A hair net and booties to cover my shoes. And lots of eye drops. A "Sharpie" was used to identify the astigmatism in my right eye. Then it was my turn in the Operating Room. The worst part of the actual procedure was when they removed the tape that held my eyes open.
I was not allowed to look at a computer screen on Monday. I was supposed to take a nap. But I never really got tired. I fell asleep around 6 pm. I woke up around 10. Watched some more TV for an hour or so and fell back to sleep.
That is an uncharacteristic amount of sleep for me, but given I just finished a 25 hour race this weekend it was not surprising. Monday thing were great.
Day 2:
I had read that pain an irritation should begin today. I did not feel anything. I continued to use my artificial tears every 20 minutes or so. Every four hours I took a cocktail of eyedrops that included an antibiotic, a steroid (prednisone), and a pain killer (NSAID). I actually did not start the NSAID until my last application on Monday because, as I said, no pain. While I still did not feel anything on Tuesday, I continued to use the NSAID.
I tried to test my vision on Tuesday to see if it had actually improved. I thought it had but then I was not so sure.
I had a follow up appointment that afternoon. I stayed home again, but answered emails and what not. Chris came and picked me up and took me to Sandy. Like I said not the most convenient of places, but I feel good about using them. The appointment was quick. They checked my eyes. My vision reading seemed good. My farsighted vision was vastly different between my two eyes. I was concerned, but Dr. Yardly was not. He said it was normal and that my sight will be all over the place the next couple of days. He also said that if I did not need the NSAIDs not to take them. We then talked a little mountain biking and Rich Abbott. He knows Rich and so we talked him up a bit. Chris returned to work and I drove my car home (which I left in town the day before).
That night my eyes seemed to get irritated. There was some pain. When I was in high school, I went to the doctor with mono. He asked if I was in pain. I said no, but he gave me something for pain just in case. That night my throat became incredibly painful. I could barely talk or swallow. My mom told me it was in my head because of the earlier conversation with the doc. As it ended up it was not in my head, but I wondered if this time it was. None the less, I kept the NSAIDs as part of my cocktail.

My new "sleepwear" so I don't rub or scratch my eyes in my sleep. Sexy!
PS: please excuse the typos, at the time of this writing I could barely see.

1 comment:

1,000 Kind Acts said...

KC, I had PRK a few years back and can totally relate... it was painful and it took a solid 2 weeks for me to be able to see, but when that time period was over... I COULD see! And I haven't looked back since! I will say that there are two things that I would prefer to be better: my eyes are significantly more sensitive to the sun (thus have constant raccoon eyes from my sunglasses) and my night vision could be better, but not having to deal with glasses or contacts after 15 years of it feels really, really good!

Hope you heal soon...

Take care,