Eye care - Cataract Operations

What happens if you don't test your eyes!

A Cataract close up

Courtesy Wikepedia
Courtesy Wikepedia

How I had a cataract removed


The gift of sight

Eyesight is a valuable gift. We see and hear from the time we are born and take it for granted.

At least I did until I read about Helen Keller. Helen Keller was rendered blind and deaf in early childhood by meningitis, but with the help of tutor Anne Sullivan, went on to become one of the most respected women in the although, as a child, effectively she could not communicate at all. This helped me “see” how important vision and hearing are.

As a child I had excellent eyesight and no one in my family evrer needed specs.

This continued to be so until early adulthood, when as a Junior computer operator, I started to suffer with headaches.


The music of the time was

The Dave Clark Five Glad All Over” and Bits And Pieces”
The Four SeasonsSave It For Me” And ”Big Man In Town”
The Beach Boys had ”Fun, Fun, Fun”
The Searchers had “Needles And Pins”,Don't Throw Your Love Away”,When You Walk In the Room” and ”Love Portion Number Nine”

And Beatles were really hot with 'I Want To Hold Your Hand” amonst other tunes.


I had an eye test. I had astigmatism. I needed hank B Marvin (Shadows – Dance on) glasses. They were horn rimmed heavy and green tinted. I hated them. They hurt my nose and got in the way. They made me look nerdy and reduced my opportunity window with the chicks. Glasses were not cool! I hated them (er I said that already.).

Now we did not have Google but I went a library and read about astigmatism and found out that “eye exercises” could go some way to relieving this problem. I got some books with small print and read these without specs, in poor light, forcing my eyes to focus. Welll after a few weeks I no longer need the specs and threw them away. A year later I had my eyes tested, my eyes were perfect and so I forgot about the glasses.

Fast Forward to 2007.

The top 5 radio plays are:

  1. Fergie - Big Girls Don't Cry

  2. Sean Kingston - Beautiful Girls

  3. Plain White T's - Hey There Delilah

  4. Elliott Yamin - Wait for You

  5. Rihanna featuring Jay-Z - Umbrella

The Cataract

Over the years my arms are getting shorter as I no longer have the reach to read without specs. I use readers from time to time in poor light or when text is in red or on a red background. I need to have my eyes tested. Guess what! I have a cataract in my right eye. And a budding one on my left.

According to Wikipedia A cataract is a clouding that develops in the crystalline lens of the eye or in its envelope, varying in degree from slight to complete opacity and obstructing the passage of light. Early in the development of age-related cataract the power of the lens may be increased, causing near-sightedness (myopia), and the gradual yellowing and opacification of the lens may reduce the perception of blue colours. Cataracts typically progress slowly to cause vision loss and are potentially blinding if untreated. The condition usually affects both the eyes, but almost always one eye is affected earlier than the other Apparently in the old days you had to wait until the cataracts became “ripe”. That is you had to be nearly blind before these could be removed. But now apparently not. They can ber operated on and a glass lens inserted straight away. So I booked the surgery. One eye only for now.

Prior to the operation I had to have various tests at the Eye Institute. By the way the eye hospital is like a battlefield with people wandering about with Eye patches and head bandages. Quite scarey actually.!

The Operation

In any event ,the day of the operation drew nigh and I went in. First surprise, I had a local anesthetic! An injection around the eye and one into the eye! So far painless. Perhaps I should digress at this point and say that when I go to the dentist I refuse the injection because I can't stand the numbness and drooling and I hate that feeling! Well my eye area felt exactly the same. The operation was done with my eye open and it was a strange experience.

An hour or so later after having a patch put on my eye (Aargh Pete the Pirate Aargh) and being given a kit with drops and eye care instructions (no water in the eye from showering,no bumping, jolting or sneezing, no Gym for about a week)In addition I was told to return on the following day for a check up. I find using one eye a challenge. I bump into walls and pour coffee past my cup. So I reckon people losing sight in one eye have to relearn visual acuity. More appreciation for eyesight

The Aftermath

Next day the patch is removed and I am told no driving for 48 hours. Wait 3 weeks and get my eyes test for new specs. Initially I could see very well with no specs required but as the lens settled I needed specs. But as a result,I find that the astigmatism which had been cured by eye exercise is back. So now I need multifocals . I only needed reading glasses originally but since the cataract operation my vision is actually worse in that eye. Because of the glass lens I am not a candidate for corrective surgery, but I can have the lens removed and replaced with a corrective lens but I don't want to go down that route. I am now about to try contacts for the first time. So we will see. my long vision is perfect.

Using contacts at my age is not easy. Getting them in is easy but adjusting ids something else. My reading vision is perfect but now my long vision is a problem. However let's be patient , time will tell.

Good news for now is that I don't have to worry about the cataract on my left eye just yet!

Another great hubmob by Sixtyorso


Princessa profile image

Princessa 7 years ago from France

That's right, we take our sight and hearing for granted that it is difficult to imagine how we would cope without. I like the way you always make reference to the music at the time of things happening.

I hope you find a good solution for your problem. All the best!


Candie V profile image

Candie V 7 years ago from Whereever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure!

My eye sight has been bad most of my life. I do need to try eye exercises!

It's amazing how music weaves thru all of our life experiences, where we were, who we were with, the highs and lows. Wonderful hub!

Paper Moon profile image

Paper Moon 7 years ago from In the clouds

I am starting to use reading glasses. Mostly when I am tired, my eyes get tired. Happily, I can still read your hub. :)

Iphigenia 7 years ago

Good advice - I have been short sighted since my early teens I have contact lenses, reading glasses that I need to use for close-up work when wearing contact lenses, glasses for when I'm not wearing my contact lenses, ordinary sunglasses, prescription sunglasses, ordinary and prescription swimming goggles and ordinary and prescription snorkelling masks ..... such a palaver sometimes. Also, cataracts seem to run in my family - I've not got them yet, but I totally sympathise with you.

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Princessa I am now using one contact lens on my right eye, the one with the cataract and it seems to be working. I am not using specs right now!

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Candie thanks so much for your generous praise. Comments are like applause. Thank you!

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Paper Moon Sadly the ability to read deteriorates from about 40 onwards. Then you start with the readers. Eventually you can't go shopping or to a restaurant without them. Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting.

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Iphigenia Up until a few years back I had 20 20 vision but als that all went downhill. Although ther is some light at the end of the tunnel (see my earlier comment to Princessa. BTW thanks so much for your great support.

RedElf profile image

RedElf 7 years ago from Canada

Great hub, sixtyorso. Always enjoy your writing.

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall

Really enjoyed this, that girl lol, not sure who I felt sorry more sorry for lol.

mehedi 7 years ago

nice article, i enjoy it when i visit


sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

RedElf Thanks for stopping by and enjoying. Much appreciated

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Hawkesdream Both of them The agony and the ecstacy!

Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 7 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

EGreat hub as a;ways there Sixty.

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Thanks Rod for your reading and appreciation.

mistyhorizon2003 profile image

mistyhorizon2003 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

Great hub as always Sixty. I am one of those lucky people who even at 39 have perfect vision according to the last eye teat I had, (above average apparently). However, I am not holding my breath on that lasting forever as I am so far the only one in my family not to wear any kind of glasses or contact lenses.

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

Misty not only pretty but lucky too! Nice to see you about. Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting

JYOTI KOTHARI profile image

JYOTI KOTHARI 7 years ago from Jaipur


nice tips for cataract patients. It is a common problem in India. Rated up!


Jyoti Kothari

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 7 years ago from South Africa Author

JYOTI Thanks for stopping by and commenting. I saw a program on Discovery once about cataract operations being done by flying doctors in the ruaral areas of India. very interesting

magdielqr profile image

magdielqr 7 years ago

Thank you for this informative Hub.

Marisa Wright profile image

Marisa Wright 6 years ago from Sydney

Sixtyorso, my husband had perfect vision straight after the op but it deteriorated slightly after that. He was disappointed because his mother had the op and has perfect vision. The surgeon blamed his astigmatism but my hubby was suspicious that was an excuse - so I'm pleased to read you had the same experience, sounds like it's genuine!

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 6 years ago from South Africa Author

Marisa I think it is genuine but dissapointing none-the-less.

I wish hubby well after his operation.

marisuewrites profile image

marisuewrites 6 years ago from USA

Hi Sixtyorso, gee I've missed you!! I'm glad you had the eye taken care of, and I fear I might have something like that ahead of me...eeek, I'm such a chicken.

As you know, I've written many stories about my mom's blindness, and your story gave me courage. I've had a miserable 2 years suffering with horrible dry eye syndrome. Both eyes are affected, and have a couple of other problems, one of which was a thick oily production that probly could have plugged the leak in the gulf. I should have suggested it...

anyway, guess what? I was allergic to the "natural" tears the dr prescribed and none of us figured it out for months and months.

So, I did my own research, and discovered if I take fish oil, Vit A, Vit D3, and High Gamma VitE, my eyes improve. It's a lot of pills, but worth the result. Eyes still water at times, but the duration is shorter, less redness, and a good excuse for me to lie down with warm packs on the eyes and then cool...

sigh, eyes are precious, and we do need to be carefully pursuing good care !!

I loved your story, as usual!! Good to "talk" to you here on the hub, I'll write about my absence soon.

We moved from Florida to Oklahoma, and are now settled, no more crisis!!! (right? )

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 6 years ago from South Africa Author

Yeah well time has gone by and the contacts turned out to be a bummer. I used one contact for a while but that caused me to have a red , swollen eye and sometimes infections in that eye. I am now back to glasses (multifocals) and am now due for another eye test and perhaps better glasses.

Who knows how this wil all end!

marisuewrites profile image

marisuewrites 6 years ago from USA

I will be hoping for good eye health for you. If you can and your dr approves, try those supplements I mentioned. Omega3 fish oil helps eyes particularly, keep cells healthy, and the others help with inflammation everywhere. Let me know,....

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 6 years ago from South Africa Author

Hi Marisue

thanks for your comments as always much appreciated.

I do take plenty of supplements. I am a walking pharmacy.

trust me!

marisuewrites profile image

marisuewrites 6 years ago from USA

I hope time will be in your favor with healing! I am very watchful and sympathetic to those with eye trouble. So Frustrating and life changing, how well I know with my mother's journey.

Best to you, how are your travels coming and your wife's back condition, is she doing alright?

sixtyorso profile image

sixtyorso 6 years ago from South Africa Author

Hi Marisue

Travelling since Friday night.

I am breakfasting in Vienna near the Danube river.

I have limited access to Internet. (30 minutes per day). so i am having withdrawal symptoms.

Dearly beloved to have operation on September 28. The pain now outweighs the fear!

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