What is "normal" recovery after Lasik?

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What is "normal" recovery after Lasik?

Postby mike01 » Mon Jun 16, 2008 10:32 pm

I'm planning to use this thread to report on my experience and track my progress.

I do have one question however to start out:

How common is it for a person to still have blurred vision ( I can drive during the day but prefer not too) 10 days after Lasik and still have everything turn out well (at least 20/20)?

My experience:
I had -5.50 in each eye. The day after Lasik my vision was blurred but just barely good enough for me to drive myself to the 1 day followup.
The doc said I had 20/20 vision and I was speechless because frankly my vision sucked. The only clear things were things close to me (within 5 ft).

day 3 my vision was slightly better.
days 4-8 my vision was worse than days 2 or 3. I had a bit of a freak out about this time. I've decided that it is not good to hear a doc. tell you that your vision is 20/20 when your vision sucks. Also no one at the clinic I went to explained what I should expect (what is normal) as far as recovery goes. They sort of made it seem like the normal thing is to see almost perfectly the next day. Is that normal??

day 9 it seemed to be (maybe) slightly better
day 10 I'm having a bit of irritation in my left eye and maybe my vision is slightly better but it's still very frustrating trying to function with this lack of accuity. I have what seems to be perfect vision right after I put eyedrops in my eye... until I blink a few times and then the clarity is gone.

I'll keep posting updates but if anyone can answer my question above it would be appreciated. (What is "normal" recovery?)
mike01
 
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recovery

Postby chrissy » Wed Jun 18, 2008 9:24 pm

Hi,
I just had Lasik May 23, and I was pre -6.5 -1.5 and -7.0 -1.75
I could see the next day, 20/20 in right and 20/30 in left. Some dryness, but overall crisp outdoor daytime vision. Noticeably worse dryness at night especially right when I woke up. Liquigel at night before bed helped a lot with morning dryness.

I can honestly say now that I am seeing 20/20 with both eyes, do not even think about drops during the day, except once or twice; still drier at night, see haze around lights and the TV, but nothing horrible.

I was on steroid drops 2 extra weeks b/c I had a freak out 2 weeks out where i woke up and my left eye vision was significantly blurry, but it was just irritation (basically dry eye)

I know everyone is different, but I also know that 6 months is really the entire recovery process, and fluctuations in vision can occur for up to that long.

Don't fret too much, as your vision still has a lot of healing/catching up to do.

I cannot believe how well I am doing (seemingly) and every day I wake up expecting the worse. Hang in there!
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Re: recovery

Postby LauraD » Thu Jun 19, 2008 3:17 pm

chrissy wrote:Hi,
Liquigel at night before bed helped a lot with morning dryness.




Aren't you suppose to be using a Preservative Free gel/drops? At least in the immediate weeks or 3 months after? All I hear is that there is no other option then Preservative Free. Drops with preservatives in it are bad for the dryness.
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Re: recovery

Postby mike01 » Tue Jun 24, 2008 8:42 am

chrissy wrote:Hi,


I was on steroid drops 2 extra weeks b/c I had a freak out 2 weeks out where i woke up and my left eye vision was significantly blurry, but it was just irritation (basically dry eye)



Thanks for the response. I quite taking the steroid drops after 7 days because I thought they might be contributing to my blurred vision. Perhaps I should have used them longer??

Anyway I'm at 18 days post op and my vision is still not good at distance. Up close it's perfect though and I can see perfectly with binoculars/microscopes or whatever so I feel that at least I'm not dealing with a higher order problem. Either I'm undercorrected or just not healed yet. (Whatever that even means? What is healing that could leave me undercorrected?)

I'm going in for a follow up in just over a week and if I'm not seeing better by that time I'll ask for a glasses prescription. I need them to drive comfortably because right now I need to be right up on a road sign to read it. I especially need glasses in low light because things seem more blurry and I do have some glare/light sensitivity.

I'm staying pretty optimistic but am not sure if I should have done lasik. Contacts were really not horrible, at least I could see perfectly.
mike01
 
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...different for everybody

Postby MrRossDollaz » Tue Jun 24, 2008 3:27 pm

The normal recovery for Lasik varies differently amongst people. The best way to evaluate your condition is to call the medical office if you encounter or question any possible complications. [Redacted] provides free evaluations for lasik Surgery.

Note: Commercial website address redacted.
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Postby mike01 » Sat Jun 28, 2008 5:45 am

Interestingly, Wednesday night (about 3 weeks post op) I thought my vision was better than usual. Thursday and Friday it seemed to be getting even better. Friday I checked my vision with a FP Doc's 10 ft eye chart and could read the 20/16 (lowest on this chart) line. I feel pretty good about that obviously, but the weird thing is that my vision is still blurry.

It's weird that I'd be seeing 20/16 but still be blurry. I wonder if that is astigmatism or some other distortion. Either way I'm optimistic that it will continue to clear up.
mike01
 
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Postby mike01 » Fri Jul 04, 2008 3:58 pm

I went in for a (24 day) follow-up. My vision is still less clear than I'd be satisfied with and in low light (evening) it is not good enough to read street signs until I'm right next to them.

Anyway my Dr. suggested it may be a dry eye issue. He put me back on steroid drops for the next 3 weeks and started me on Restasis. I'll go in for a follow up in 3 weeks.
mike01
 
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Postby mike01 » Tue Jul 08, 2008 4:07 am

I just figured out what my problem is... I don't know why it took me this long but I was just sitting in class watching a powerpoint presentation and it was "clear". I have vertical monocular ghosting in both eyes. Two images of every letter one fainter image superimposed half way up the other image.

On the drive home I noticed (looking at brake lights) that the ghosted images are far apart at distance and converge as I get closer to an object. Brake lights easily look like four brake lights (instead of two) separated by as much as a foot at distance then come together as I get closer.

I can squint sometimes and join the images. I guess that explains why my near vision is perfect but at distance worse. It also explains why I can read an eye chart but am still so unsatisfied with my vision.

Here's to hoping it resolves.
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Postby LasikExpert » Tue Jul 08, 2008 6:43 pm

The Snellen 20/20 eye exam in the office is set at 20 feet distance. If you problems present for objects greater than 20 feet away, then the Snellen test is not likely going to show the problem.

There are several scans available that can show your irregular cornea (which sounds like simple astigmatism). It is possible that it will resolve with continued healing, however it may also need corrective lenses or additional surgery.
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Postby dede11 » Thu Jul 10, 2008 1:58 am

hey Mike - don't worry too much about the ghosting/double vision issues. I had -5.5 in each eye and dealt with the EXACT same symptoms that you describe. I used to feel almost disabled because the quality of my eyesight was extremely poor due to severe double vision (I would see about four of everything...epecially traffic lights...and these images would eventually converge - only IF i was close enough).

Anyhow the fact that you can see really well with drops is a VERY good sign! Just be very patient and try not to let your eyes run your day. It'll get better with time.

As for myself, at about the 2 month mark I started to get a taste of what my eyes were capable of (I had very rare excellent vision days). By the 3 month mark, the excellent vision days became more common. Now I'm at the 6 month mark and I have 20/10 vision, day in, day out. I'm still dealing with what I would describe as a moderate ghost/double vision/startburst combo but let me tell you its a far cry from what it used to be!

Keep your doc informed but be patient and optimistic - you'll get better with time!
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Recovery

Postby JW » Mon Jul 14, 2008 1:28 pm

I had my surgery done on Friday the 13th, June 13th 2008. I have been really nervous as to my recovery. But I am glad that I found this thread.
It seems that I had the exact same symptoms as Mike01. Fustrating, but now I know that this vision or lack of is normal. I still am not sure if I am suppose to keep taking the Pred Forte (steriods) or not. I have been keeping my eyes lubricated with the tear drops as much as possible. Am I doing the right thing, I hope so. I would be very dissappointed if this is as good as it gets. :?
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Postby LasikExpert » Mon Jul 14, 2008 11:15 pm

Do not stop taking any of the prescribed medications until instructed by your doctor - especially steroids. It is normally necessary to taper off of steroids. Call your doctor.
Glenn Hagele
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Postby JW » Wed Jul 16, 2008 3:55 pm

Thanks for getting back to me. Yes I am following doctors orders. Been a month now and was expecting better results. I guess everyone feels that way. Going to eye doctor tomorrow, so I will see if I improved. I will give you feed back as to my progress.
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Postby JW » Sat Jul 19, 2008 12:41 pm

Had my doctors visit on Thursday and he said everything looks good. He said it would be a slow process especially because of my perscription. Well next appointment will be in October. I hope by then that my long distance will clear up and I will be able to see better. I have noticed that my eyes are getting drier. I thought that the comfort plugs that I paid extra was suppose to take care of this. I still have to continue with my eye drops (Refresh Plus) every hour and keep my eyes moist. It is definately an improvement from wearing glasses.
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Postby LasikExpert » Sat Jul 19, 2008 8:30 pm

The punctal plugs provided immediately after surgery may have been the type that dissolve after 10-30 days. Check with your doctor about the need for a new set.

You should read our article on Lasik dry eye treatment.
Glenn Hagele
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