Laser Eye Review by Professional Rugby Player Duncan Bell

"To walk out at Twickenham in front of 90,000 people was something special. And being able to see my friends and family in the stands, and see them clearly, was a special moment for me."

It was difficult at times. The physios on the side of the pitch would have to carry 3 or 4 replacement contact lenses for me, in both eyes. I'd regularly lose contact lenses during the games, which is distracting at the best of times but it was annoying a lot of the time, and it happened for the best part of my career so I finally decided to do something about it. My eyesight was pretty bad, I was very short-sighted and it was very difficult seeing people on the field. I had no idea where the ball would be, or how far away it would be, and relying a lot of the time on instinct. The very first consultation, which was very quick, very simple, all the staff were very friendly and the procedure itself was actually not as bad as I feared. And when I had the procedure, I was very well looked after and the aftercare was superb and even until to this day, I'm still receiving aftercare and it's all first class. Bigger thing for me, and it's still a thing that I still have a great feeling about, is waking up in the morning and being able to see. You know, throughout my entire life, I started wearing glasses at 5 years of age, so from the very first moment I can remember virtually, waking up in the mornings and reaching over to get my glasses is, I still do that now but it's, I'll get used to it in the end. And it's really nice to wake up and look at the ceiling and looking around and know I can see everything perfectly. I can see things much clearer now. My eyesight's better than it was than with the contact lenses. Yeah, I can just do things just that little bit quicker, it's great. I can think of one specific thing that when I'm in a close combat, in a mauling situation, rucking or tackling, I used to close my eyes. Purely and simply because I knew that if I got a knock to the eye, or I got brushed from a shirt in the eye, my contact lenses would come out. Now I don't necessarily have to worry about that. And obviously I don't want to get poked in the eye, but I can actually go into contact situations now, seeing everything and not have to worry about losing my contact lenses. It's been a big positive experience in my life and hopefullly my eyesight will stay the same and I can continue doing what I do best, which is playing rugby. I feel like my eyesight is absoluately perfect. I feel absolutely fine. I feel, I feel great. I always wanted to play rugby, from virtually since I can remember, and obvioulsy wanted to play for my country. But one of those things I wanted to do was to play against the All Blacks. The All Blacks are the best team in the world. They might not have won the World Cup for a while, but they are the best team in the world. And to walk out at Twickenham in front of 90,000 people, to see a mass of people in the stadium and mass of colours and to see the hacker, done in front of me, was something special. But I think also as well, singing the National Anthem and being able to see my friends and family in the stands, and see them clearly, is a special moment for me, and that will live in memory for a long time. I can remember specifically remembering, I'm finally, I'm here, I've lived my dream, I'm living my dream and I'm going to play against the All Blacks and that's the best rugby experience of my career. I'd say go for it straight away. I've been hestitant about eye surgery for my entire rugby career, and that's 10 years plus. I've put it off every single year and finally I decided to do it, and I wish I'd done it 10 years ago. Well, laser surgery has been a big benefit for me, as a player on the field. You know, I used to lose a lot of contact lenses previously, from knocks and getting them wiped out of the eye. And I obviously don't experience that anymore. I can go into tackles and into rucks and contact situations with my eyes wide open, and not really worrying about losing my contact lenses because they're obviously not there, and do my job, which is to bring people down so, I don't have to worry about contact lenses anymore and that's a great relief.

Duncan Bell, Professional Rugby Player, had Wavefront LASEK laser eye treatment in Jun, 2009. Treated by Dr Boezaart at Optimax London Laser Eye Surgery Clinic.

All our success stories are volunteered by Optimax patients who are so delighted with results of their treatment that they wanted to share their experience with others.

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