IntraLase Wavefront LASIK Review By Richard Trenholm

Jul, 2010

Hello, my name is Richard and I'm about to hopefully have Laser Eye Surgery.

So, I've worn glasses since I was at primary school so it's been most of my life, my prescription is about -5, -5.50 in each eye, so I'm pretty short sighted.

Got the brochure that Optimax sent, which has got loads of information and it's got the different kinds of surgery available, aftercare and all that kind of stuff. I've got the consultation tomorrow it's at the Liverpool Street branch of Optimax in London. I've got my papers and not wearing contact lenses, I'm all set, so I'll let you know how I got on.

Hello again, so I'm back from my first consultation. I went to see the optometrist he gave me a normal eye test, same as any usual opticians, same sort of thing you've probably had plenty of times especially, if you've worn glasses as long as I have. You got to focus on the lines and read lines off a chart and do the thing when the eye flips in and out 'number one', 'number two' sort of thing and, the other thing that I had to have put in was dilating drops, so what they would do is make your pupils bigger, so they can get a really good look inside of your eye but because your pupils are bigger there's more light coming in so your eyes are more sensitive to the light, I'm ok now actually but, this might be a little bit darker than I like.

I'm definitely opting for the LASIK and the IntraLase cornea flaps, so yeah Lasers all the way.

I've been given a load of papers, for patients; recommend a friend, patient information guide, a map of the clinic, some details about the treatment and some stuff about the doctor himself.

I made the appointment for a Friday, so I can take the Friday off and, have all weekend to recover and then I can hopefully go back into work on Monday, without these (glasses).

Hello again, it's the big day; it's the morning of the big day! I'm about to go get my Laser Eye Surgery I'm going to the Optimax in Finchley Road, so wish me luck!

Hello, I'm back again and I have new eyes, it didn't hurt, it wasn't painful, it wasn't anywhere near as unpleasant as I was kind of imaged that it might be.

So right now my eyes just feel really dry, I feel like I've slept in my contact lenses, you know when you sleep in your contact lenses and you just feel gummed up. Now I'm going to go to bed and sleep through to the morning and, then I've got another appointment and there going to check that everything is ok, so I'll speak to you again then.

Hello, so it's the day after my Laser Eye Surgery and here I am, no glasses and I can see, it's brilliant! I've put a load of eye drops in so I'm still a little bit misted up from all the eye drops, but yeah I feel pretty good. I can see stuff right across the room; I can see the clock next to the bed, I can see all sorts of things. Still a little bit sensitive, so that's why I've got the curtains a bit closed, but feeling pretty good.

The procedure itself, you walk in and it's like a dentist really, there's a dentist chair laid out flat, you get in, you lay down, the surgeon asks you to position yourself so you're under the laser, there are two sets of lasers equipment your positioned under the first one, your eyes are constantly moisturised all the time, constantly putting drops in your eyes.

Started off with a suction cup which is basically a clear plastic ring the size of your eye, your eyes are held open so the suction cup can be placed. It was kind of uncomfortable, it's a bit of pressure around the edges of your eyes; you're looking up into the laser through the section cup, you can't really see anything at this point, you're so misty and blurring from the drops and the rest of it and, the laser shines into your eyes, you don't feel it, you don't hear anything, you can't really see anything except this green light, slightly blurry, fluttering around above you.

That's the flap cut but it kind of stays in place and they remove the suction cap and that's over really, really quickly. You can blink at that point as well; you don't have to worry too much about disturbing the flap. They cover that eye over and, do the same with the other eye and suction cup, Laser flap. At that point the surgeon said 'that's the worst of it over' which was brilliant to hear.

The next bit is the actual Laser as in the shaping of the eye; it doesn't involve a suction cup or anything. I was asked to look up and the surgeon basically taped this sticky clear film, stuck it to my cheek, it held my eye lid up and stuck the tape on my forehead.

Then the flap was opened up and that involved the surgeon actually using a little sticky thing to open up the flap and, that was slightly weird and, that was the only time that anything physically actually came into my eye. It's almost like when you've got your glasses on and, just lifting the glasses up and everything goes out of focus, that's exactly what it was like and, again I didn't feel anything, it wasn't painful.

It's a little bit difficult to focus on the Laser because it's kind of flashing, and moving around and it's out of focus and blurry. It's a bit like the end of 2001, or something, it's got these lights flashing in front of you, but just keep focusing on the green and red laser as best as you can.

The sound wasn't a problem it's a bit like a crack, crack noise, like a little bolt of lightning. Then there was the smell, a lot of people had warned me of the smell, that's what everyone said. It's kind of an electric smell, like when you're a kid and leave the electric on for too long and it starts to over heat. I didn't find it a problem and it was over very quickly.

It's going to sound stupid but the thing that was the most painful, mainly because it was completely unexpected, was when the film was taken off my eye, it was stuck to my cheek and forehead and, when that suddenly came off I was like 'ahh!', but apart from that, no, there was absolutely no pain at all.

The surgeon just said 'ok, right you can sit up now' and I was sort of thinking 'right am I going to be helped out of here?' And I just sort of sat up, I had so many drops in my eyes and, it was so misty and blurry but I could tell straight away my vision had improved and, what it felt like was when you get a new pair of glasses and it's a bit like 'whoa'.

Then I was taken downstairs and given a quick check-up to check that everything was ok, everything looked fine, so I was given a coffee, there was a lot of waiting around but all-in-all I got there about 10am and I left at about 1pm.

The optometrist said 'how was that?' I was sat there thinking 'it almost seems too easy, it feels really straight forward' and she said 'well you won't be saying that when the anaesthetic starts to wears off' and I thought 'ah oh'.

The anaesthetic started to wear off probably as I was about to leave, so I put my sunglasses on and, I could start to feel it getting a bit achy. It did feel a bit dry, my right eye felt slightly worse.

My brother came with me to help me out and he bought me these sunglasses which are brilliant because there cycling sunglasses, so there designed to be completely wrapped around really close to your face, so their great for keeping the light out.

As soon as I got home I was able to take these for pain, they were the same drops used during the treatment, so when you get home if your eyes feel uncomfortable during the journey home you can take these and relax a bit.

I've been given a bunch of drops and stuff, it's all clearly labelled as you can see '1R', so I take that for my right eye and, then I take left eye and, then wait 10 minutes, then I've got 2R and 2L. Also I've got these refresh drops, if I'm feeling a bit dry or uncomfortable then I can just stick one of these in.

So I've got to sleep in these fellas, these are plastic eye shields they go on like that; that will stop me from rubbing my eyes. It took me quite a while to get to sleep; I think that was partially the eye shields, partially my eyes were a bit uncomfortable, especially my right eye, really felt like it had something in it.

That was the really hard part of not rubbing my eyes and, even now after having put my drops in they feel a little bit misty.

Now I'm off to my consultation to check that everything is looking good, I'm feeling good, I'm pretty happy, my eyes feel fine, I'm not feeling in pain, right see you later!

Hello again, I'm back for the final time. Now I can do all the things I had to lay off after the surgery so I can go back to the gym, I can shower normally, rub my eyes, I don't take the drops anymore. I went swimming for the first time the other day without having to worry about contact lenses or swimming goggles and the rest of it, that was brilliant and I go surfing.

So I hope that if you are having the procedure that this video diary has helped to put your mind at rest about how quick and painless the procedure is good luck with it and I hope that it goes as smoothly as it did for me. So thank you very much for watching my video diary and take care.

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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