Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The eye's don't have it

This past weekend, Lynda, Sarah, and I had eye exams. I was supposed to have mine a few weeks ago, but I had to reschedule to accommodate some child care duties.

So, we headed to Worthington to do all the eye measurements, prescription verification, and basic checkups that we go through every year.

My eyes have a long and sordid history of crapitude, which I might have mentioned before at this space. For many years as a kid I experienced double vision but I honestly didn't think that much about it. My brain managed to merge the images into one and I simply didn't think that much about it. But when I was about eighteen, my ability to manage the split images seemed to get worse and I wasn't able to cope with it well. So, I told mom and dad about it. After they got over their surprise, we went to Macon to see a specialist. He explained that my ability to compensate for the double vision had worsened as I had aged and so he suggested that we try surgery to reposition my right eye. (My right eye was the source of the problem, since it doesn't point straight ahead, thereby creating two angles of sight--hence the double images.) The doctor thought that by repositioning the muscles that move the eye, it might pull the right orb into the correct position.

It turned out to be a in-house type of surgery, something that didn't require hospitalization. It was literally done in the exam chair, with local anesthesia. It felt something like that creepy scene in Minority Report where Tom Cruise's character has his eyes replaced by the scuzzy Russian doctor. Of course, my experience was much more hygienic and safe, but looking back on it, it seems a bit off. Anyway, the surgery didn't work--which the doctor had warned was a likely possibility.

So, ever since then I've been managing the problem with a prism in my right glasses lens, which helps bend the light downward, cancelling the different angle of my eyeball. It isn't a perfect solution, but it has helped--though I still experience double vision, especially when I'm tired or stare at something for a long time.

So, anyway, that's one of my eye problems.

But on Saturday, I found out that I've got another one . . . a cataract is developing in my right eye. Cataracts are a clouding of the lens that sits behind the iris and focuses the light onto the retina. Naturally, it is not common for someone of my relative youth (35) to be developing cataracts, but it's me, right?

For now, the plan is to combat the gradual fuzzing of image quality (when it becomes noticeable, which isn't yet really) with more prescription adjustments and other mechanical means. It might be necessary some day down the road to resort to surgery, removal of the faulty lens and replacement with an artificial lens. It's a very common, very safe, and pretty simple surgery, so I'm not worried. Who knows when the time for that will come. It is likely years away, but it's coming.

But don't be surprised if my post's someday look like this.


Unknown said...

I realized how important children eye exams are when my daughter was failing to concentrate on class lectures. She couldn’t see white boards and projectors properly! She could have perform better if I would have taken her to an optometrist when she was younger.

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