My PRK story and fabulous results so far! =)

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My PRK story and fabulous results so far! =)

Postby JStrick525 » Fri Jun 04, 2010 9:58 pm

I am not a technical or science loving person so this will not be a very technically in-depth missive. It’s mainly my own thoughts and feelings before, during, and after my laser eye surgery. If you want to know the ins or outs of PRK than Google is your friend or check out some of the other great threads on this website. =>

(dH = dear husband)

Pre op numbers (not sure what these mean but if they help someone than great!):

Rx: appx 20/400

appx: -5.00 diopter (don't have the exact numbers for this)

R 46.60 / 47.50 x 086
L 46.40 / 47.30 x 102

Lets see. Where to begin? Well, I guess I should say that I have been wearing glasses since I was about… maybe 11 or 12. It’s been so long that I can’t really remember lol. I’ve always had really bad allergies and I guess my eyes are sensitive so I have never been able to stand wearing contacts or anything like that. I don’t even like having to put drops in my eyes either. I started looking at laser vision surgery probably when it started getting popular in the 90’s. It seemed really neat, and the idea of not having to wear glasses was really interesting. Of course, this was before I was out on my own or had money or a job or anything like that. So yeah, fast forward to about March of this year, right before I turn 28.

My husband heard an ad on the local radio station about a (huge) discount at [] Eye Center in Manchester Ct. It ended up giving us 1500 bucks off (after the radio discount, military discount, and a just because he was in a good mood discount the price ended up being $2800.00, almost buy one eye get the other for free!). Anyhoo, we talked about it and I ended up going to the consultation to see if I was a candidate. Turns out my pupils are larger than average so I had to have PRK. From what the doctor told me it’s basically the same thing, just the technology is older (been around more I guess), the technique is a little different, and the healing time is a little longer. In Lasik, a flap is cut in the cornea and in PRK the top layer of the cornea is removed. Like I said earlier, if you want to know more about Lasik and PRK than there are plenty of great websites to visit.

Anyway, I was a good candidate for the PRK so I decided to go for it. I got my surgery date (right after some finals for college and right before my week vacation break), prescriptions, and worked on mentally preparing myself for the procedure. They told me to stop my allergy meds the Monday before surgery since it dries out my eyes. (And I’ve been miserable ever since lol. I can’t wait to start them up again.) A week before I started one of my eye drops, Restasis, and three days before I started another one, Bessivance (antibiotic). Surgery was on Thursday, May 27th, two days after my 28th birthday.

Thursday, May 27th, Day 0 – My dear Husband (Dh) took me to the Eye center. I was REALLY REALLY nervous! I had the fidgits really bad. Anyway. Got there and after a few minutes went back for another quick vision test. (I had a previous appointment Monday the 24th and they did more tests to prepare for Thursday) They gave me my Valium (boy did I need it by then, lol!) After about fifteen minutes the meds kicked in and I started feeling really good. Really trippy. Everything made me giggle. The nurse put some really stylish shoe covers on my shoes and a fashionable hair net on my head (yes, sarcasm) and then led me into the procedure room.

Things are pretty fuzzy by this time but I’ll write what I remember. There was a big machine in the room. I didn’t have much time to look at anything else. There was a clock on the wall but I was without my glasses so of course I couldn’t see what time it was, lol. I sat on the table of the machine and the nurse started loading me up with eyedrops. Then some more drops. And heck, a couple more for good measure I guess. Then Dr. [] came and put two little dots (with a marker!!!) on my right eye. I didn’t feel it at all but the idea of someone writing on my eye was REALLY weird!!!!! Ok, so after he got done drawing on my eye I had to lie down on the table. Got some more drops. By this time, I could hardly keep my eyes open. It was really hard. The doctor came behind my head and put in the clamp things that keep your eye open. It didn’t hurt at all, just felt a little weird to realize it was inside my eye socket, lol. No pain at all though. Maybe just a tiny little bit of pressure.

He did my right eye first, taped my eyelashes back, put the thing in to keep it open, covered my left eye (can’t remember if it was in that order though lol), and then got to it. The brush thing that removed the top layer of cells on my cornea was trippy. It didn’t hurt at all, just felt really strange. Sorta like an electric toothbrush. That kind of vibration. No pain, just the vibration. After a few seconds of that, he scraped the cells away. Then came the laser. That was weird too! It freaked me out because, well, it was a laser going into your eye! LOL. During the laser part you have to stare at a red light that has a green light just inside that. Then as the laser fires the red light kinda expands. Think of a firework just after it explodes in the air. I can’t think of any other way to explain it. Anyway, I think I got 37 seconds in my right eye and a few seconds less in my left. After the laser was done, I got some cold, and I mean COLD, water squirted into my eye. I guess to cool it down and stop any swelling. Whatever. It was cold! Let’s see, after that I think he put a little patch of something on my eye. I think it was an ointment or something to prevent infection and promote healing. Not sure. After the right eye was the left eye. Same thing, just the other eye. Then I got the bandage contact lenses put on. Dr [] talked me through the whole process and that really helped my nerves.

The whole procedure took probably around 10 minutes, from walking in to walking out, but it felt like a lot less. The worst part was afterwards when they ripped the tape off my eyelashes. Ouchies! Those weren’t numbed! Lol. After it was all over they sat me up and let me tell you, it already looked beautiful! I was still trippy and my eyes were still numb and hard to keep open but what I could see already looked great! I thanked the doctor (I think… I hope I remembered my manners…) and the nurse walked me into the nice dark waiting room where my husband was sitting. He smiled at me and asked how I felt. I actually felt fine! Still trippy and numb and starting to get a little dizzy but so far so good. dH held up a magazine and I could already read some of the bigger print. My vision was already better than before when I didn’t wear my glasses.

Anyhoo, the doctor came in a few minutes later and checked me out. Said that things looked really good and told me to go home and sleep. The trip home was about an hour and so I got an hour nap there. When we got home (about 2pm or so I think) dH wanted me to eat something. I had a bowl of cereal. Fruit Loops! Really healthy right? Lol, oh well. I called my mom and told her I made it though just fine. She was really happy that all went well. After that, I went to sleep. Woke up about 8pm, used the facilities, got a drink of water, did some drops, then went back to bed. Eyes still felt ok, I could tell that the numbing stuff had worn off so things were starting to feel a little bit uncomfortable. Not horrid though. I was just tired. With my college finals just getting done and not sleeping well the night before (from nerves) I felt like I could sleep for a week.


Friday, May 28th, Day 1 – OMG THE LIGHT IS BURNING! I think it would feel better if someone just carved out my eyeballs and got it over with! Lol, ok, not that bad and after my drops things felt much better. Things were fuzzy and it was hard to keep my eyes open sometimes, but not to where I couldn’t do anything. I think my eyes just get really dry at night so of course they will sting a little more. I had another eye doctor appointment today. Drove an hour there to be looked at for less than 5 minutes. That seems a bit wrong but oh well. Saw about 20/40. Dr [] said things looked really good so far and sent me on my way. Got home and slept some more. Woke up later that afternoon, forced some food into my stomach (more cereal lol), did my drops, then went back to sleep. Or tried to. I laid there for a while. Finally got bored enough to put on an audio book. Had to listen or do something or I was going to go crazy! That helped me nod off for a few more hours. Woke up, did drops, took Tylenol for a headache, then went back to sleep for the night. All day when I was up, I wore my sunglasses because the light was so bright. Pain was minimal, felt like I had an eyelash (or 3) in my eyes lol.


Saturday, may 29th, Day 2 – I think today was the worst day in terms of pain so far. I hope. Felt like all my eyelashes and eyebrow hairs had fallen into my eyes. It was really hard to open them at all. Had to wear my sunglasses all day again. Eyes stung really badly. Took Tylenol and that helped some. Had another doctor’s appointment. Holding around 20/40. Probably could have read a smaller line but my eyes hurt so much that it was hard to keep them open. Dr. [] said that everything was just fine and when he looked at my eyes he said that it looked like I was healing ahead of schedule. Probably all the sleeping that I am doing. After the appointment I stumbled back to the car, dH drove me home, and I fell back into bed and slept off and on the rest of the day. Woke up for drops but that was about it. The contacts really bothered me today. Mainly on the right eye. Feels like it keeps moving and that makes it hurt. Blah.


Sunday, May 30th, Day 3 – Today is a pretty good day! Things are still a little fuzzy. It’s almost like a haze. Like after a shower or if you cook something too long and there is a little bit of smoke in the air. The light sensitivity isn’t as bad today, thank God! I am still sleeping a lot, but dH says I should keep doing that so I will continue healing well. But yeah, the eyes feel alright. Either I am getting used to it or the contact is not moving as much so my right eye isn’t hurting as much. Got up this morning at 7:30 and was able to open my eyes right away without having to coax them. No doctor’s appointment today or tomorrow because of the holiday so I get to be lazy. Yay!

Been doing my drops religiously, especially the lubricating drops. The lubricating drops are supposed to go in every 30 minutes when I am awake but I know they go in more often. They really make them feel better so oh well. Took a nap for a few hours earlier but woke up about 1pm and I have been up ever since. I know I will be tired tonight but I would like to try to get my sleep schedule back to normal a little bit. Vision today is still pretty good. A little fuzzy. Some letters or numbers seem to be coming up twice. I think that is called ghosting. Light sensitivity isn’t as bad. I don’t have to wear the sunglasses around the house today, lol. I have been trying to drink lots of fluids to help keep myself hydrated and my eyes moist. Tired of audio books. Tired of sleeping. Got on the computer for a while today. Checked my Facebook games and did the last little bit of homework before my week vacation. (I had finals for two classes last week right before my surgery so yeah, it’s been a bit extra stressful.) Computer is on minimum brightness so that makes it better. I have to make the words huge too, lol. But it works. I was able to write all of this missive so far too. Anyway, that’s all for now. I will check in later and write how I feel then.


Monday, May 31st, Day 4 – Happy Memorial Day! Today is another good day so far. Woke up at a somewhat decent hour and did my drops (as usual). I don’t feel like sleeping all day so that is a plus. Eyes had no problems this morning. Still trying to keep myself hydrated. I totally can’t wait to get these darn contacts out tomorrow. It feels like they’re drying out my eyes more than anything else. My allergies too. Been sneezing and have a stuffy nose today. Might end up taking a nap to sleep them away (since I can’t take my allergy meds for a few more days) but at least it’s not because my eyes hurt. Oh well. Am able to set the type on this missive to 140 percent rather than 150 percent like yesterday. Yay for improvement! It feels really weird to not be wearing glasses. They’ve been a part of me for so long that it kinda feels like something is missing. If I need to scratch the bridge of my nose I still find myself trying to go underneath glasses that aren’t there, lol. When I woke up this morning, I was able to see what time it was without aid and that felt strange. I was happy about it, don’t get me wrong, but it just felt odd.


Tuesday, June 1st, Day 5 – Had another appointment today and all is well. Vision test was 20/30. I got my contacts out today too. Eyes were a little irritated at first but it got better after a few minutes and now just feels like an eyelash. Over the course of the day, my vision has been a little blurrier than yesterday but I think it’s because I am without the contacts and my cornea is trying to smooth out. Not much else to report today. Eyes are a little tired but that’s normal lol. Next appointment is next Tuesday. Who knows what I’ll be at then. Maybe 20/15. Maybe 20/50. =P


Wednesday, June 2nd, Day 6 – Eyes are quite a bit blurry today, but not impossible to function. More inside than outside it seems. Had a good day though. dH took me out to eat to celebrate my eyes doing better and we also went for haircuts (mine looks so cute! The first I was able to get without having to factor glasses in!) and some other random shopping. Forgot to do one of my midday drops (my bad…) but my eyes don’t feel bad at all. As I type this the font on this journal paper is 120%.


Thursday, June 3rd, Day 7 – Well, it’s been a week since my PRK. Not bad for only being 7 days out I must say. My eyes are still a little blurry today but I think it’s because I think I have been doing a little too much the past couple of days. dH told me that I should remember that, again, it’s only been 7 days and PRK takes a little longer to heal. Therefore, I am trying to rest my eyes a little. I took a nap a while ago and when I woke up my eyes were not as blurry so that supported his statement. Blah. I get to stop 2 of my eyedrop prescriptions today. The antibiotic ones I think. I still take Lotemax if my eyes bother me and the Restasis twice a day. And also the tears whenever my eyes dry out. But I can handle that! At least it’s not 5 prescriptions per day, lol. Also, I get to start my allergy meds again so I am feeling much better.


Friday, June 4th, Day 8 – Today is pretty good. I got a little more rest last night and woke up to pretty clear vision. The feeling that something was in my eye is pretty much gone now. dH still wants me to take it easy and rest my eyes so I might curl up with an audio book for a bit this afternoon. I’ll probably fall asleep but oh well, lol. I have noticed that as the day goes on, my eyes get a little more tired and as that happens the vision gets a little blurry again. Not bad blurry, just slightly. No pain though so I can handle a bit of blurriness, lol. Was able to set the type on this missive to a regular 100% today and I don’t have to squint to see it. Woo hoo!

Well, except for updates when I have eye appointments I think this will be my last major entry in my PRK journal. I hope this helps if anyone is considering Lasik or PRK laser eye surgery. If you live near the central Connecticut area I can definitely refer you to the [] Eye Center in Manchester. They are a great bunch and really take care of their patients. If you have any questions don't hesitate to ask!

Jennifer
PRK eye surgery on May 27th, 2010
[] Eye Center, Manchester, CT.


Note: Edited to remove clinic and doctor names.
Last edited by JStrick525 on Thu Jun 10, 2010 9:24 pm, edited 3 times in total.
JStrick525
 
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Location: Connecticut

Re: My PRK story and fabulous results so far! =)

Postby LasikExpert » Sat Jun 05, 2010 5:59 pm

Jennifer; thanks for the great report. Feel free to keep us updated in this thread, but it looks like you won't have much new to talk about!Just continued good vision without glasses.
Glenn Hagele
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Re: My PRK story and fabulous results so far! =)

Postby JStrick525 » Thu Jun 10, 2010 9:20 pm

***UPDATE***

Tuesday, June 08, 2010, Day 12 - I had another checkup today. My Doctor said that everything was looking great. I saw 20/25 and dH and I were very pleased. Dr said that he wanted to keep me on my Lotemax for a while longer. So still have to do that, the Restasis, and the artificial tears. Joy. Eyes are still doing good. I have some blurry moments but it's mainly toward the end of the day and when my eyes are dry. A couple drops of artificial tears and that goes away quickly. No pain or irritation at all. Still a little bit of light sensitivity but that's what sunglasses are for! ^^ Next checkup is in July and I'll update again then. Ciao!
JStrick525
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Jun 04, 2010 7:43 pm
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Re: My PRK story and fabulous results so far! =)

Postby LasikExpert » Fri Jun 11, 2010 7:23 am

I look forward to your July report.
Glenn Hagele
Volunteer Executive Director
USAEyes

Lasik Info &
Lasik Doctor Certification

I am not a doctor.
LasikExpert
Site Admin
 
Posts: 3309
Joined: Fri May 12, 2006 6:43 am
Location: California

Re: My PRK story and fabulous results so far! =)

Postby JStrick525 » Wed Aug 11, 2010 1:46 am

Haha, forgot to post my update from my appointment last month. My bad, lol. Anyway, last month and this month are the same. Still holding at 20/25 and my doc says everything still looks perfect. I'm off all of the drops except my Restasis (2x per day) and lubricating drops (when my eyes get dry). Blurriness is pretty much gone unless I have to pull an all-nighter for school but then I think anyones eyes would be dry. =P Light sensitivity is minimal and I sometimes have to remind myself to use my sunglasses when I go outside. No pain. No irritation besides having to drive for an hour to be seen for 5 minutes. =P Kidding... sortof... Anyway, I have another appointment Sept 1 so I will post again then. =(^-^)=
JStrick525
 
Posts: 3
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Location: Connecticut

Re: My PRK story and fabulous results so far! =)

Postby vicebilly » Sun Sep 12, 2010 10:44 pm

I'm glad to hear of the good results. How has your night vision been with starbursts halos and such???
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