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Corrective Eye Surgery Part 1: LPI

Posted Sep 23 2012 2:27pm

I’ve finally decided to bite the bullet and get vision correction surgery.  I am a ball of nervousness, excitement, and anticipation.  I can’t imagine what it will be like to wake up everyday and be able to see without the assistance of contacts or glasses. 

Normally, my contacts don’t bother me much, but it’s still a tool used to fix a problem.  If that tool fails (aka my contact falls out and I lose it, my eyes are bothering me, etc.) and I don’t have my glasses on me, I’m virtually blind. 

I’ve decided to get Visian corrective eye surgery, which is essentially the latest technology.  Lasik surgery thins the cornea to correct vision, this wasn’t an option for me.  My vision is SO bad, that the Lasik would have thinned my corneas too much.  Visian, on the other hand, is when the surgeon puts a permanent contact lens inside the eye.  This should be more accurate at correcting the vision.  It is considered permanent, but if my vision was ever to change I would be able to get the lenses replaced, which made me feel better.

It isn’t that easy, though!  I have an astigmatism (football shaped eyes as opposed to soccer ball shaped eyes) so about 4 weeks later I’m going to get a little bit of Lasik to finish up the vision correction surgery.  In between the Visian and the Lasik the doctor told me that I should be ok to see, but may have trouble driving at night with “halos” around lights. 

But alas, I still needed one more procedure.  An LPI procedure, Laser Peripheral Iridotomy, is when the surgeon takes a laser to shoot very small holes into the eye.  This relieves pressure and can prevent serious complications after the Visian surgery. 

I got the LPI procedure this past week.  I have been told it is the worst part.  They put a bunch of drops in your eyes (drops to numb them, to constrict your pupils, etc.).  Then they check the pressure in my eyes, and I wait for the pupil constricting drops to take effect.  I was feeling pretty crumby when this was going on.  The drops give you a wicked headache, and my vision was all blurry.  I was getting really anxious for the procedure since everyone kept saying it was the worst one.

I finally got my turn to go into the little room, and thank god for the nice nurse who came in and distracted me.  He chatted with me and told me what to expect in a really upbeat way which eased my nerves a little bit.  The surgeon then came in, and the procedure was quick.  Basically I stayed seated, with my head in a little chin/forehead contraption.  He put something like a contact lens with a little place to hold onto it up to my eye, and then shot it a bunch of times with the laser beam.  It didn’t hurt (probably because of the numbing drops), but it felt like someone was poking my eye.  He was holding it open with the contact lens which made things easier for me since I couldn’t blink.  After a minute or so on each eye it was over.  It really was no big deal.  I waited around an hour for a second pressure check which was good then I was dismissed. 

The actual eye correction Visian surgery is this THURSDAY!  I can’t believe it!  I am definitely less nervous since everyone said that this first part was the hardest.  I guess I’m most anxious that my vision isn’t going to be 100% between when I get the Visian and the last Lasik procedure.  I’m just hoping it’s good enough to drive, work, etc without the need for glasses.  I will definitely keep you all posted.

 

If you aren’t squeamish…here’s a video of what I had done.  Same room, surgeon, and nurse too!

 

Would/have you guys gotten eye correction surgery??  If so tell me about your experience with it!

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