Cataract Surgery & Day One Post-Op

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Left eye one is done!! First post-op check-up done and all is looking good. Right eye is scheduled for June 12th. Doing the happy dance - well, except for waiting to get glasses that will work with both new eye strengths. LOL!

I promised a little more information about the surgery. As I stated when I discussed options in my previous post, "Cataract Surgery & Me", everything is relevant to my experience and the surgeon and surgical center I used. Different doctors and different parts of the country will vary as will the condition of your eyes.

To prep for the surgery I needed to get a pre-surgery physical exam. Even though I had seen my GP the same day as my ophthalmologist, this exam was a little different than my annual Rx renewal visit. But fortunately, all my blood work was good. My eye doctor ordered three different eye drops, Besivance, Prednisolone and Prolensa. The first two were used three times a day, the last one only once. It didn't matter the order, only that we allowed five minutes between drops. We learned to use a timer, otherwise we'd get busy and an hour later realize we hadn't done the next drop. LOL! Stu instilled all my drops, much easier for me.

Like all surgeries, I couldn't eat after midnight the night before but since my surgery was in the afternoon, I was allowed up to 16 ounces of black coffee or plain water up between midnight and 9:30 am. I did indulge in several sips of coffee. The only medication I took that morning was the one for my blood pressure, as ordered by my regular doctor at my pre-surgery visit. (Be sure to ask YOUR doctor what to take.)

The surgical center was easy to find and the staff was great. I had done my morning eye drops but after check-in, there were a LOT more. They want your eye very dilated. Also expect anywhere from 3-5 people to ask you which eye and for me, two of them used a marker on my forehead above that eye.

I had been told to bring my medication list (Rx & OTC), including the eye drops, a picture ID, my insurance card and $10 for my sunglass kit. Also, if I had an advanced directive, I do (Five Wishes), bring a copy. The sunglass kit was a pair of fitovers - since I have at least three pair (a must when riding my motorcycle), I didn't have to buy them. Hey, every penny helps!

I was soon taken back where I laid on a gurney and the nurse put a nice warm (heated) blanket over me. I didn't have to undress and I had followed their advice and worn a zip-front (I don't own any button front) shirt for the EKG leads. Questions, IV put in, more eye drops, new person, question, still more eye drops, new person, questions, doctor, questions, nurse anesthetist, questions. Then I was wheeled back.

What do I remember? I remember the anesthetist asking how I was, I answered "Awake". She said she'd increase the sedation. I remember a drape being stuck to my face (and them telling me this), and then a opening being opened for my eye. A bright light and I commented on it. Laughter, and being told it's going to get a lot brighter.

The next part I have to admit that I'm not positive what is real and what might have been a sedation dream. I remember seeing red, feeling some discomfort but not wanting to speak while the surgery was going on. Not painful really, just uncomfortable. The next thing I remember is the drape being pulled off my face - ouch! LOL!

The nurse asked me to sit up and brought me my requested drink and snack (one of the early questions was what I wanted - choice of coffee, hot tea, iced tea, juice, soda, water and then saltines or graham crackers). I drank my water and demolished my saltine crackers.

I got my post-op instructions (continue my eye drops) and wear my cute little see-through eye patch the rest of the day and then during naps/nighttime for two weeks. No bending my head down and no lifting anything over 15 pounds for two weeks. Ahhh, rest!

I had some slight dryness and a scratchy feeling in the eye, but no other discomfort. When we got home and instilled the eye drops, that went away. I took an hour long nap and the eye was a bit stuck when I tried to open it but no further problems. Blurry vision and strong halos around lights but no discomfort.

My vision continued to be quite blurry until noon the next day when it started to clear. It continued to improve and we finally popped out the left lens in my glasses so the eyes could focus together better.


I am now two days out from surgery and the left eye is great, well, except for reading. Because my glasses corrected my close vision as well as distance, this is where I have to close my right eye to read small print. It will be much worse after the right eye is done since the lens will only correct distance.

All in all, I'm very happy and looking forward to June 12th. We still hope to head to TN in early July.

Ciao for now!

PS. Here is the link to the surgery for my right eye.

4 comments:

  1. Thanks for the detailed information Donna. Most people just say. . ."It's a piece of cake." I appreciate the details. I don't think I have cataracts. . . at least not yet. My younger sister had them done last year. Everyone I know, both my parents and sister had problems afterwards and have learned to "just live" with the problems. I'm not sure I would like being told that. They all went to the same doctor. Think I will go somewhere else when the time comes. Thanks again!

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    1. Glad it helps, even a little. Day three and all is still good. My next visit is on Tuesday - both to check the surgery (1 week visit) and to get all the measurements for my right eye.

      And I think I'd be looking for another doctor. I had total faith in Dr. Kalyani...his reputation is excellent. He even offered for me to get my eyes done in TN so we wouldn't have to stay here into July but I told him no. My eyes were in his hands - literally.

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  2. Congratulations on your successful surgery!

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