I need to vent and I need advice

Discussion in 'Chit Chat' started by MsE, Apr 27, 2007.

  1. MsE

    MsE New Member

    So, here's the problem. I am very myopic. I have cataracts. I have glaucoma. I can still see to drive safely in the daytime and the glaucoma is under control with eye drops.

    Have any of you had combined cataract and glaucoma surgery?

    A few days ago I saw an excellent (supposedly) eye surgeon. He advised me to have the surgery for both cataracts and glaucoma. Said it would be more likely to be successful "sooner rather than later."

    However, today I received pre-op forms from the office. 1) they had indicated the wrong eye for surgery, not the one that is the worst and 2) the list of things that could go wrong is extremely long and scary--especially for the glaucoma part of it. 3) although there is a relatively simple glaucoma procedure done with a laser, that is not the form that the office sent me. 4) The forms they sent me include the fact that the glaucoma surgery may not work at all.

    So now I plan on having a discussion with the optometrist who referred me to this surgeon. But what else should I do? My gut is telling me to "Think this over"; in fact, it's saying "Not on your life!"

    What has been your experience? Am I being a great big chicken?

    [This Message was Edited on 04/27/2007]
  2. jaltair

    jaltair New Member

    However, I know that the combined surgery has been done for a while now with varying results depending on the individual situation and visual impairments.

    I think I'd be leery with getting different papers than expected and having the wrong eye spelled out for surgical procedure!

    As far as the benefit, from what I understand is the ocular pressure is lessened and will benefit the outcome for the cataract surgery. The reason it's mentioned that the glaucoma may not be resolved is due to the fact that the pressure may not be lowered enough and this could necessitate a second surgery. (My take on it all anyway as a nurse.)

    The optometrist may not be familiar enough with the surgery required to answer many of your questions. It may be better to go back to the ophthalmologist who is an actual MD and just lay it all down in front of him or her. Make sure you have all your questions answered to your satisfaction before signing on any dotted line. I'd also make sure they mark the appropriate eye to do the surgery on. That never hurts ...
  3. MsE

    MsE New Member

    I appreciate your reply. I will talk to the optometrist first because he is in this community and will have received the information from the opthalamogist. I will also get back to the opthalmologist, but that will be a bit more difficult because he is based in Seattle and extremely busy. However, I will certainly try to reach him after I talk to the local guy.

    The eye drops have been keeping the glaucoma under control. I didn't think surgery for that was a good choice unless the drops were not doing their thing. It surprised me, and the paper work sounded ominous. Again, thanks for posting.

    [This Message was Edited on 04/27/2007]
  4. JLH

    JLH New Member

    My father had cataract surgery and was extremely pleased that he had done so. His vision was so much better afterwards!

    No experience with the glaucoma.

    Could you get a second opinion from another eye surgeon? Would that make you feel more at ease?

  5. MsE

    MsE New Member

    I have seen two specialists and two optometists. The first specialist and two optometrists said never sign up for surgery until you absolutely need surgery.
    At that time they didn't think I absolutelyy needed the surgery.

    Then, beause I seemed to be becoming more myopic and have -10 vision in both eyes, I was sent to a second specialist who indicated it would be best to have the surgery. However, he is a very busy guy and I didn't have enough time to ask him the questions I needed. A young woman ran me through all the tests, then the doctor came in for a final look at my eyes and said he recommended I have both procedures done at once. Then he disappeared saying his office would call me. It did, and befoe I knew it I had an appointment for surgery in Seattle.

    However, once the paper work arrived and I read the stuff, I began to have second thoughts. Now I plan to have a consultation with the optometrist who sent me to this last specialist because he will have all that doctors' results in hand and should be able to explain to me why the surgeon pushed for surgery. Is there a real need for it, or is it a case of a good surgeon does surgery, so....let me do the surgery.

    I always believed surgery should be a last result. So that's why I'm on this board asking for feedback from any of you who know about the combined surgery, especially the glaucoma surgery, and the cataract surgery. I know that last one is supposed to be uneventful. It's doing the two together that has me concerned because I a) react badly to meds and b) form extra scar tissue.

    So, I'm back again, looing for folks who have had to deal with this. I need our wisdom.
  6. rockgor

    rockgor Well-Known Member

    Don't know anything about surgery for glaucoma. I had cataract surgery about ten-12 years ago. The results were excellent.

    I wore glasses for 45 years because of myopia. After the catartact surgery I needed glasses only for reading.

    Several years after the surgery my vision in one eye became cloudy. The opthalmologist said it was a problem w/ the structures that held the lens.

    He cleared up the problem w/ laser surgery done in his office w/ no anesthesia. I looked into the laser machine, a red light flickered several times, and the problem was immediately fixed.

    Note: If you have this procedure done, be sure to ask the dr. if the laser is set on "delicate eye surgery" or "melt bulldozer".

    You have to help the medical people to reduce the possibility of error. When you get on the table TELL them which eye is involved. Don't just hope they pick the correct one.

    The consent form you sign is just like the list of side effects that comes w/ your pills. Everything from a rash to death. But that doesn't mean death is probable.

    Since people are in varrying stages of health, of different ages, and will follow dr's instructions w/ individual fidelity, the surgical form lists all possibilities.

    Just ask the dr. what results he expects. If his reply doesn't reassure you, consult another dr before you make your decision.

    Good luck.
  7. MsE

    MsE New Member

    You mention all the stuff that can go wrong that is listed on medication labels, and that hit it right on the head: I am the one in 20,000 who have the odd reaction to many meds. Also, I end to build more scar tissue than most people. I guess that's 'cause I'm so fair skinned.

    You're quie correct: I simply have to have another talk with the surgeon before I go on with this. It's the combination of the two surgeries that has me jumpy. Thanks for posting.

    Ever since CFIDS hit, I go into anxiety warp drive when it comes to medical anything. I envy the people who really can pt their trust in the doctor without second-guessing everything.