Astigmatism & Such

Post your questions and start your research in this forum if more than three months ago you had any type of surgery to reduce the need for glasses and contacts.

Postby JPD » Thu Jul 12, 2007 2:49 am

Betty39 wrote:Well, actually I look at this the only way I can, through eyes that have been dry for 9 months! And I guess all the percentages don't really mean a thing if you are the one that has a complication, for you it is a 100% complication rate.
I also read that it can take up to 5 years for Lasik induced dry eyes to return to normal. I hope that in the next 5 years neither one of us will be a statistic any longer :)


I completely agree with everything you say here, and I have the exact same concerns as you. Remember, we're in the same boat. You're exactly right, if you happen be one of the unfortunate few who have the long term problems then the percentages mean nothing because you have a problem 100% of the time.

What I have read is it take 5 years for the nerve density to return to 100%, but that doesn't necessarily mean it will take five years for your tear production to return to normal. For your eyes to properly lubricate themselves I don't think it's necessary for all the corneal nerves to be intact. For example, the rare few people who claim to no longer need eye drops two weeks after lasik have had the same amount of nerve damage as you and I, also their nerve density will take 5 years to regenerate. There are a number of factors in play, like the sensitivity of the nerves, which is also very important. This is the reason good Lasik doctors check for dry eye before hand. Unfortunately some of us still have adverse effects. We both wore contacts for years, and due to that we probably have reduced sesitivity on the surface of the eye.

This reminds me of one point I forgot to make in my previous post. One thing which also skews those dry eye numbers is that many of those unfortunate people were operated on by crappy doctors who don't even check for dry eye. Had they gone to a good surgeon many of them would have been told they weren't a candidate until their dry eye issue was resolved.
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Postby DryEye » Thu Jul 12, 2007 3:05 am

Both of you seem to have gotten on the money results when it comes to your vision - you see crisp and clear. If your only complaint is dry eye then having to put in drops throughout the day isn't that bad considering that overtime the frequency should reduce.
Imagine having to think about doing enhancement(s) in order to get it right and along with the possibility of not getting it right the and then having the dry eye issue again.
I do agree that many of things that are advertised by the industry fail to mention all these things along with much more.
Just look at the new site realitylasik.com that is targeting the 21-30 age group. I wish I had gotten the on the money result with the 20 minute miracle , but apparently I am not the only one, so results and reasons why could be better investigated. I guess that was my point earlier about going to the best docs in order to get your best chances.
Thanks for commenting on my question.
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Postby Betty39 » Thu Jul 12, 2007 3:11 am

I agree with your comment about wearing contacts long term having an effect on the nerves on the surface of the eye. However, my doctor knew I wore contacts for 21 years and never mentioned this might be a problem. He did no tear testing but did examine my eyes through the slit lamp. If there were any signs of dryness he and I missed them. I can't say my Dr. was a bad surgeon, I have good eyesight so apparently he knew what he was doing there. But the way he treated (or rather didn't treat) me after surgery was horrible. He made me think I am the only person he has worked on that had dry eye. Which I know can't be true. It took spending hundreds of dollars in addition to the 5k I spent on the surgery and going to a corneal specialist before I found any relief. So in that respect he was a crappy doctor. Thank God for punctal plugs and Restasis.
There is a well known dry eye specialist named Robert Latkany from N.Y. He recently wrote a book called "The Dry Eye Remedy". In that book he explains that it can take up to 5 years to overcome Lasik induced dry eye. True sensitivity should resume before all the nerves have healed. But for some people it just doesn't. This Dr. has treated thousands of dry eye sufferers. Interestingly enough, he used to be a refractive surgeon. He gave that up and now works exclusively with dry eye sufferers regardless of the cause. It's a great book if anyone is interested. It has a lot of suggestions for treating this.
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Postby Betty39 » Thu Jul 12, 2007 3:22 am

Yes I feel very fortunate that I won't need an enhancement. I wouldn't have gotten one, I couldn't imagine being back to square one with the dry eye.
I wouldn't say my vision is perfect. I do have some halo issues at night. They don't bug me. I do see more floaters, but I can ignore them. I was used to less than perfect vision because for years I wore a regular contact in my right eye when I in fact I needed a toric lens. So great vision wasn't something extremely important for me. I just wanted the "reduced need" thing. I was totally prepared for less than perfect vision. That's why this has been so hard on me. I wasn't prepared for daily discomfort for this long. And it's not just about putting in drops during the day and no big deal really. It's about the fact that the drops only really help for like 5 minutes and then you are feeling the same way again. It is a hassle. I'm sure you know. And it's about the fact that I can no longer comfortably go shopping or work because of all the darn air conditioners. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad to have the good vision. But as you know, the dry eye isn't just a minor thing either.
Hopefully like you say in time it will be reduced.
Good luck to us all!
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Postby DryEye » Thu Jul 12, 2007 3:27 am

Betty
Since your initial surgery you dry eye has gotten better - Right?
I hope you aren't having to dump drops in at the rate you were the first 3 months.
You mention increased floaters - I noticed that as well along with some stuff that no one can explain to me - Weird.
Your dry eye will get better - Hang in there - Time flies by
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Postby JPD » Thu Jul 12, 2007 3:33 am

DryEye wrote:Both of you seem to have gotten on the money results when it comes to your vision - you see crisp and clear. If your only complaint is dry eye then having to put in drops throughout the day isn't that bad considering that overtime the frequency should reduce.


Unfortunately my big complaint is night vision related. However, it really goes hand in hand with the dry eye, as it most certainly appears the dry eye is the cause of the bad night vision. Which by the way I will say that I am now seeing improvement daily. Or should I say nightly:)

Betty39 wrote: However, my doctor knew I wore contacts for 21 years and never mentioned this might be a problem. He did no tear testing but did examine my eyes through the slit lamp.
Your doctor should have. I believe that's one of the "Standard" critical tests, along with checking pupil size. I was given the tear test, I tested good, but I still have dryness. So still no guarentees with the tear test.

Betty39 wrote:But the way he treated (or rather didn't treat) me after surgery was horrible. He made me think I am the only person he has worked on that had dry eye. Which I know can't be true.


Ya, definately not true, and that's not right for your doctor act that way. I got a similar reaction regarding my night vision from one of the OD's who does post-op care for my doctor. He didn't act as if I was the only one, but he acted as if the fact I was having night vision trouble(halos) could only mean I wasn't properly following their post-op instructions.

Betty39 wrote:There is a well known dry eye specialist named Robert Latkany from N.Y. He recently wrote a book called "The Dry Eye Remedy". In that book he explains that it can take up to 5 years to overcome Lasik induced dry eye. It's a great book if anyone is interested. It has a lot of suggestions for treating this.


Sounds excellent, I will check it out. Thanks!
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Postby Betty39 » Thu Jul 12, 2007 5:00 am

YES my dry eyes have definitely gotten better since the third month. I am to a point now that I can cope. I'm still uncomfortable at times. It's funny, even when my eyes aren't that dry they still feel "weird". Like crawly, hard to explain. The pain is much better but they sure don't feel like my eyes pre-surgery at all. I think time, the Restasis, the supplements, the plugs are all probably working together to ease this. But then something like air conditioning or if I accidently rub an eye will bring back on the stinging and burning again.
And I do notice the floaters, but like I said, compared to the eye pain they are only a minor problem.
I think in general my eyes really didn't like this procedure. I COMPLETELY wish I had left myself alone.
Maybe in time I will change my opinion. I hope so.
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Postby bada5150 » Mon Jul 16, 2007 11:28 pm

JPD,
What degree of astigmatism do you still have? I have .75 in my right eye and it bothers me still after 6 months. I belive that Dryeye has pretty much same degree of astigmatism I have. I see ghostings on letters on TV and traffic lights. It was very scary first 3 months but now I am used to it. But still uncomfortable because .75 makes everything blurry when I only see through right eye. I don't notice blurry too much when I see things with both eyes. I used feel very uncomfortable first 3 months. I think my brain got used to it. Yet, my right eye sees ghosting, double vision and blurry when I see things only with right eye.

So what degree of astigmatism do you still have?

Thank you
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Postby JPD » Tue Jul 17, 2007 2:39 am

bada5150 wrote:JPD,
What degree of astigmatism do you still have?


It's still -.25 each eye, which is what I had my entire life before surgery. To my understanding this is basically considered no astigmatism. When it's that low, they don't bother to correct it. Not even with glasses or contacts. None of my glasses or contacts ever had any astigmatism correction in them. Growing up I had the same optometrist for 20 years and he always told me I had no astigmatism, even though it was -.25. From what I've read http://www.webmd.com/eye-health/underst ... ism-basics (Third paragraph down) only astigmatism greater then 1.00 usually needs correcting. So .25 is a pretty small amount. I never had even the slightest amount of ghosting with glasses or contacts. I'm pretty confident the ghosting I have now is attributed to dryness, like all my other problems.
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astigmatism

Postby noodles » Wed Jul 25, 2007 4:17 pm

Even with that low level of astigmatism, can it take a while for your eyes to adjust and learn to focus more clearly post-lasik?
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Re: astigmatism

Postby JPD » Thu Jul 26, 2007 12:01 am

noodles wrote:Even with that low level of astigmatism, can it take a while for your eyes to adjust and learn to focus more clearly post-lasik?


Possible, I don't know. It depends on how much you had before. If it didn't bother you before hand, then there shouldn't be anything to adjust to.
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