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  1. #1
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    Default What Would You Do?

    This is a little bit of an odd thread, but I need some good advice and figured there would be several guys that might have been in the same boat as I am. Here goes...

    I was diagnosed with cataracts last year. The right eye is worse than the left, but I'm still able to see relatively well unless it's when I'm driving at night. If I don't consciously think about it, my vision is fine. The eye surgeon says they are fast growing cataracts.

    I've worn glasses for about 63 years now. I am near sighted...blind as a bat at a distance without my glasses. Because of a severe stroke and damage to my optic never, I am only a candidate for corrective surgery that will give me perfect vision at a distance or close up...not both. I chose distance.

    Right now, when I work on anything close up, I take my glasses off and I have perfect vision up to 8 inches away from my eyes. (measured). When I have surgery, I'll lose that ability and will need to use reader glasses for close up.

    I'm certain someone on this forum has experienced the same thing I am. On the one hand, I'd love to be able to see at a distance without glasses. I'd love to wear regular sunglasses. But on the other hand, I am afraid that I'll lose my ability to see well close up. I've never used optical visors. Will they work better than reader glasses.


    Surgery is set for October 2. I'd sure appreciate any advice/experiences/suggestions anyone might have.


    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Registered User Douglas Ballard's Avatar
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    Default Re: What Would You Do? (By: Fred Reiss)

    Although I'm not in your situation, I do wear glasses with bifocals for close up. I know I would rather wear glasses for close up because I wouldn't use them all the time. I would think you would spend more time looking "long distance." I use an optical visor for really close stuff, doesn't bother me and they fit over my glasses. Just my 2 cents.
    TEMPVS RERVM IMPERATOR

  3. #3
    Director Tim Orr's Avatar
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    Default Re: What Would You Do? (By: Fred Reiss)

    Good evening, Fred!

    One question that would be relevant: Do you have astigmatism? I used to be able to use readers from the drugstore, and even used the high-powered ones as a sort of Optivisor® until I developed astigmatism. Once that set in, the readers no longer gave me clear vision. I had to have correction for the astigmatism, THEN apply the diopter. The only practical way to do this was to have glasses made with both correction for astigmatism and close viewing.

    Some time back, an oldtimer told me that the best watchmaker he knew was practically blind. There are some really powerful (and powerfully expensive, unfortunately) magnifiers made that work with glasses. Surgeons often wear them. They clip onto your glasses and are very fancy to look at, with little, cone-shaped lens assemblies that stand out from the front of your glasses lenses.

    I also had a friend who had one eye corrected for distance and the other for close-up. Ended up with almost zero depth perception, of course, but I wonder if that might be a solution for you.

    Best regards!

    Tim Orr
    "For every problem there is a solution that is simple, neat – and wrong." – H.L. Mencken

  4. #4
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    Default Re: What Would You Do? (By: Douglas Ballard)

    Thanks, Doug. I'm leaning that way as well.

    This is the third surgery I've scheduled...if the optical visors will work for me, I'll probably go through it this time.

    So, can I use the optical visors without reader glasses?

  5. #5

    Default Re: What Would You Do? (By: Fred Reiss)

    fred -

    i had cataract surgery in both eyes in the early 2000s... when i was 45-ish. i was not a candidate for any kind of corrective work other than putting in non-correcting lenses because of the degree of astigmatism.

    what i noticed immediately is was that it was like getting new windshields... immediate crystal clear. the problem is that the lenses don't let me focus in on things closer than 6" or so... so i use magnifying glasses, a monocle, etc. so... no more distortion in organic lenses because they were removed and replaced with artificial lenses, but still wear glasses and use magnifiers for close work.

    my strong recommendation would be to get a second opinion/recommendation before committing to one course of action... and walk into that appointment with a prioritized list of things you want to be able to do visually. i would then go back and review both list and second opinion comments with your original doc/ophthalmologist.

    oh... and about a year or two after the surgeries i began experiencing distortions in both eyes and was told that the sacks that contain the lenses sometimes also get some kind of buildups that can simply be lasered away in an outpatient visit... which is what they did. it was essentially zap zap zap and i could see what looked like sediment washing out of my peripheral vision.

    of course it's fifteen or more years later and your mileage may vary... but it's still always a good idea to get second opinions.

    best of luck,
    bruce
    i collect antique clocks because i get all that extra time...

  6. #6
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    Default Re: What Would You Do? (By: Tim Orr)

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Orr View Post
    Good evening, Fred!

    One question that would be relevant: Do you have astigmatism? I used to be able to use readers from the drugstore, and even used the high-powered ones as a sort of Optivisor® until I developed astigmatism. Once that set in, the readers no longer gave me clear vision. I had to have correction for the astigmatism, THEN apply the diopter. The only practical way to do this was to have glasses made with both correction for astigmatism and close viewing.

    Some time back, an oldtimer told me that the best watchmaker he knew was practically blind. There are some really powerful (and powerfully expensive, unfortunately) magnifiers made that work with glasses. Surgeons often wear them. They clip onto your glasses and are very fancy to look at, with little, cone-shaped lens assemblies that stand out from the front of your glasses lenses.

    I also had a friend who had one eye corrected for distance and the other for close-up. Ended up with almost zero depth perception, of course, but I wonder if that might be a solution for you.

    Best regards!

    Tim Orr
    Thanks, Tim. Unfortunately, correcting one eye for distance and one for close up is not an option for me. I lost 50% of my sight in my left eye and 25% in my right when I had my optic nerve collapse. Doctor tells me my brain wouldn't be able to handle it. Of course, that has nothing to do with my intelligence LOL!!
    Yes, I have astigmatism as well. So the readers at the drug store won't work for me.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: What Would You Do? (By: bruce linde)

    Quote Originally Posted by bruce linde View Post
    fred -

    i had cataract surgery in both eyes in the early 2000s... when i was 45-ish. i was not a candidate for any kind of corrective work other than putting in non-correcting lenses because of the degree of astigmatism.

    what i noticed immediately is was that it was like getting new windshields... immediate crystal clear. the problem is that the lenses don't let me focus in on things closer than 6" or so... so i use magnifying glasses, a monocle, etc. so... no more distortion in organic lenses because they were removed and replaced with artificial lenses, but still wear glasses and use magnifiers for close work.

    my strong recommendation would be to get a second opinion/recommendation before committing to one course of action... and walk into that appointment with a prioritized list of things you want to be able to do visually. i would then go back and review both list and second opinion comments with your original doc/ophthalmologist.

    oh... and about a year or two after the surgeries i began experiencing distortions in both eyes and was told that the sacks that contain the lenses sometimes also get some kind of buildups that can simply be lasered away in an outpatient visit... which is what they did. it was essentially zap zap zap and i could see what looked like sediment washing out of my peripheral vision.

    of course it's fifteen or more years later and your mileage may vary... but it's still always a good idea to get second opinions.

    best of luck,
    bruce
    Thank you, Bruce.

    I have gotten a second opinion. That's the doctor I'm going to now. Very well known and has an excellent reputation. A year ago the first doctor was ready to do surgery the next week. I went to my current doctor and he said not yet...that my vision was 20/20 with corrective lenses and my insurance company wouldn't approve it. But the cataracts grew quickly enough that he told me it wouldn't be long. That was last October. In February, he said it was time. I cancelled the surgery then because I just didn't feel comfortable with the thought of losing my near vision. Especially with how many clocks I work on and repair.

  8. #8

    Default Re: What Would You Do? (By: Fred Reiss)

    I have no serious vision problems --drugstore readers only. But I don't find them very good for close-up work, so I use three Optivisors of different magnification...most of the time with the least. Optivisors work well for me.

    Don't know whether that's useful information or not. Maybe.
    1. Check out the Repair Hints & How-To's forum. You may find your answer there.

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    Default Re: What Would You Do? (By: bangster)

    I'm going to order a pair of Optivisors to see how they might work.

  10. #10

    Default Re: What Would You Do? (By: Fred Reiss)

    I had this done about 9 months ago. Kept having a feeling of something in my eyes. Plus my eye went blind for about 20 minutes one day and again for about 15 minutes. And when it came back I only could see out of half my eye. The TV had light lines coming off the screen and things were not easy. So I had the surgery and now I don't have all that. But I still wear glasses to read and work on clocks. Plus I have always used a magnifying head set. So if you don't get the surgery other thing can happen, that you can't correct. Cataracts are a serious condition and should be corrected. Good luck with your surgery.
    R&A it is what it is

  11. #11

    Default Re: What Would You Do? (By: R&A)

    Having been in the optical industry for 32 years, I'll just add the admonition to not go cheap on your lens selection. They usually offer you options, so go with the highest price you can afford. You get what you pay for, and they do have lenses that will give you 20/20 vision even if you have astigmatism. You will be amazed at how easy and painless the procedure is, and at what you've been missing. You'll do fine with an Optivisor, and I'd recommend getting one with a drop-down second lens for those times you want more magnification.
    In rare cases, they will have to "clean" the lenses later with laser. If it happens, let them do it. It works very well.
    A man with a clock always knows the time. A man with two clocks is never sure.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: What Would You Do? (By: shutterbug)

    Quote Originally Posted by shutterbug View Post
    Having been in the optical industry for 32 years, I'll just add the admonition to not go cheap on your lens selection. They usually offer you options, so go with the highest price you can afford. You get what you pay for, and they do have lenses that will give you 20/20 vision even if you have astigmatism. You will be amazed at how easy and painless the procedure is, and at what you've been missing. You'll do fine with an Optivisor, and I'd recommend getting one with a drop-down second lens for those times you want more magnification.
    In rare cases, they will have to "clean" the lenses later with laser. If it happens, let them do it. It works very well.
    Thank you, shutterbug. I opted for far vision and will need glasses for close up. The surgeon never gave me an option on price for the lens. It's going to be covered by my medicare insurance carrier. My out of pocket is only $275 per eye. Do I have choices he didn't describe?

  13. #13

    Default Re: What Would You Do? (By: Fred Reiss)

    Probably choices that medicare won't cover.
    A man with a clock always knows the time. A man with two clocks is never sure.

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