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Intra Ocular Lens Implants Can Make a World of Difference!

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Review by JohnnyB posted 09-10-2013 03:50 AM 1745 views 0 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Intra Ocular Lens Implants Can Make a World of Difference! No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

So what do lens implants have to do with woodworking? That’s easy to answer with another question. What does good vision have to do with woodworking? At age 69, I have had cataract surgery and lens implants for both eyes, and the improvement in my vision has been amazing. Dang cataracts sneak up on you. I was having trouble reading the graduations on my rules. Things looked hazy, and cleaning my glasses did not help. Driving was becoming problematic. In the shop, sometimes I wasn’t sure the bandsaw blade had stopped moving. Now I can read the 64th divisions, and when I sand, I can see where it needs more. It is easier now to saw to the line because I can see the line. I can discriminate colors better. When I got the first eye done, I was blown away by the bright colors, and my vision was improved from 20/200 to about 20/30. I still wear trifocals for eye protection as well as for close and medium range work. My ophthalmologist detailed the possible bad outcomes, but the risks seemed small compared to the expected improvement in vision. I can’t remember ever seeing this well!

(The heading automatically throws up the manufacturer’s name, but this review is not of a specific make of lens implant. I happen to have received Alcon implants. Also, the illustration is not meant to represent any particular brand, I just grabbed it off the Web.)

-- JohnnyB - - Sometimes determination can substitute for skill.




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JohnnyB

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16 comments so far

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Pete_Jud

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#1 posted 09-10-2013 05:50 AM

Same brand in both my eyes now. What a difference. Have had them in for about 5 years now. The cataracts do sneak up, I ended up with only 10 percent vision in one eye, and was down to 30 percent in the other. Made driving scary and impossible at night. So much better in the shop now, and not as scary as before.

-- Life is to short to own an ugly boat.

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Don Johnson

612 posts in 1434 days


#2 posted 09-10-2013 09:29 AM

Just to confirm, some people think that cataracts are a film or coating that develops in/on the eye somehow, but the term actually describes the effect of the actual eye lens becoming ‘milky’. Removing the old lens and replacing it with a plastic version, produces wonderful benefits, as light is no longer scattered within the lens, and can focus correctly.

Over here in the UK, I was offered these ‘solid’ implants free as part of our National Health Service, but when I asked the surgeon about ‘focussable’ lenses – thinking that this was not possible – he explained that these were available. They are lens-shaped pouches filled with silicone, and have little ‘ears’ which are attached to the eye muscles used for normal focussing of the lens. Thus the new lens can flex, and be focussed like the old one.

Having these seemed a good idea, although it involved having to pay for them – at £2,500 each eye. I thought it was worth it, (I’ve saved a fortune on glasses) and had them fitted. I can now read, use the PC, and do woodworking without using any glasses – I just have a pair for distance views when driving.

I later discovered that the money I paid was not so much for the lenses themselves, but was because I had to pay for the whole operation rather than get it free, as I was ‘outside’ normal NHS parameters!

By the way – the operations are painless, and take about ten minutes per eye.

-- Don, Somerset UK, http://www.donjohnson24.co.uk

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woodmaker

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#3 posted 09-10-2013 04:27 PM

I’m 63 and was just told I have Cataracts on both eyes. As soon as things get worse I’m in for surgery. I’ll have to remember these for sure.
I know one thing; walking and even driving at night is becoming very difficult. I have Meniere’s disease as well so my balance is always off. So walking in the dark is a double challenge, vision & balance.

-- Mike

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Don Johnson

612 posts in 1434 days


#4 posted 09-10-2013 04:36 PM

woodmaker said: As soon as things get worse I’m in for surgery.

One additional comment I would make is that opticians seem to require a ‘push’ to authorise lens replacement – perhaps they know they won’t be selling you so many pairs of glasses!

-- Don, Somerset UK, http://www.donjohnson24.co.uk

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woodmaker

264 posts in 1345 days


#5 posted 09-10-2013 04:39 PM

Don that’s so true, they are wanting that bottom line above all else. Sad but true.

-- Mike

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Richard

906 posts in 1344 days


#6 posted 09-10-2013 07:44 PM

So you just Skip the opticians and go straight to the ophthalmologist . I stoped useing the opticians even for normal checkups and new lens for my glasses about 10 years ago. the ophthalmologist is a way better choice in my opinon.

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CL810

2013 posts in 1642 days


#7 posted 09-10-2013 10:43 PM

Don, this is incredible. Never heard of this. What is the name for this type of lens?

-- "It's amazing how much can go wrong when you think you know what you're doing."

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mantwi

312 posts in 550 days


#8 posted 09-11-2013 01:47 AM

Will these work with an astigmatism? I switched from glasses to contacts last year because my glasses always looked like they belonged to a little kid. Smudges, dust, sweat and oil from my eyebrows made them useless, the contacts are much better. I have one for close up and one for far away, took some getting us to but I hardly notice anymore. The implants would be great, no more hassle caring for my contacts and good vision is just what I’m looking for. What did they set you back?

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JuanGatico

71 posts in 840 days


#9 posted 09-11-2013 02:41 AM

I’m happy for you because that means QUALITY OF LIFE.

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doubleDD

2457 posts in 697 days


#10 posted 09-11-2013 02:54 AM

+ one with Don Johnson. Needed eye glasses every 6 months to keep vision somewhat passable. Finally found out I had cataracts. Got the operation (10 minute procedure ) with the new crystal-lens and never wore glasses again. It was like seeing for the first time. I gave up woodworking for a couple years due to things turning out like crap. Looked good to me but others would say you must be blind. That was 5 years ago and life is a lot better now.

-- --Dave, Downers Grove, Il. When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams

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JohnnyB

84 posts in 1043 days


#11 posted 09-11-2013 03:15 AM

mantwi – The implants are to correct for cataracts. If you don’t have cataracts, you might be wanting to investigate radial keratotomy, which I believe changes the shape of your eye in a way to correct your vision. The lens implants don’t seem to correct astigmatism. My procedures were covered fully by Medicare and my medi-gap insurance so I don’t know the cost. And I still need glasses for close work and reading. You should check with an ophthalmologist to see what your options are.

-- JohnnyB - - Sometimes determination can substitute for skill.

View Robert Brown's profile

Robert Brown

123 posts in 1345 days


#12 posted 09-11-2013 07:03 AM

mantwi & JohnnyB – My wife had cataract surgery last month. She also had astigmatism. Her doctor said that astigmatism could come from two different places. One is the lens that is replaced during cataract surgery and the other is the cornea of the eye. So if the astigmatism is in the cornea – cataract surgery will not help it unless the lens is made to correct for that. But if is caused by the lens – the astigmatism will be gone along with the cataract.

We had extra testing done to determine where my wife’s astigmatism originated. It cost us an extra $150. The test told us that my wife would not need a specially made lens to correct for astigmatism in the cornea. That special lens would have cost us an extra $1100.

My wife is really happy. She says the world is beautiful. My cataract is not bad enough for the insurance to pay yet, but the way my vision is – I am hoping that next year it is bad enough. I am going to look into those focusable lens that Don Johnson from the UK mentioned.

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mantwi

312 posts in 550 days


#13 posted 09-11-2013 01:35 PM

JohhnyB and Robert Brown: Thanks for the information. I’ll discuss with my ophthalmologist at my next appointment.

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Don Johnson

612 posts in 1434 days


#14 posted 09-11-2013 04:02 PM

CL810: – The lenses I had fitted were called Crystalens Multifocal, and there is a discussion here:
http://www.oregoneyes.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/Crystalens-Patient-Handout_Chung.pdf

that should give you a start on delving further.

-- Don, Somerset UK, http://www.donjohnson24.co.uk

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sgmdwk

259 posts in 526 days


#15 posted 09-12-2013 07:22 PM

+1 on the benefits of cataract surgery. I have no idea what type of lenses they put in. But I went from a lifetime of severe nearsightedness to being able to drive with no glasses at all. I do still need glasses to read – pretty normal for an old gaffer in his 60s.

-- Dave K.

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