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Discussion Starter #1
I had a real scare yesterday. I had gone to the dentist whose office if about 30 miles from home so I was driving the freeway. On my way home, I started seeing some double images of lights and some roadside signs. I started panicking and once I got off of the freeway, I pulled over and called my eye doctor. He told me to calm down and come in today for an exam. I also had a dosage increase of Gabapentin on Tuesday of this week and was concerned that I was having a side effect from the med. Double vision and visual changes are side effects of Gabapentin. I also called my foot doctor, the one prescribing the Gabapentin and he was out of the office and would not be back in until Monday. I guess my foot doctor doesn't have anyone on call for problems, which is almost unheard of these days, so I wasn't able to ask him about the Gabapentin and vision problems. So...I called my pharmacist and she really wasn't much help either. Her suggestion was to decrease my dose until I saw a doctor. You can't stop taking Gabapentin suddenly. It is a med usually prescribed for epileptic seizures but used for diabetic nerve pain and can cause a non-epileptic to have seizures if withdrawn suddenly. So, I decreased my dose and went to bed, it was hard to sleep, I just didn't know what was happening to my eyes. I already have been diagnosed with stage II of IV cataracts. I went to the eye doctor today and found out that my left eye sight had declined since my last visit in 12/09. I was seeing "ghost images", my vision wasn't doubled or everything would have been doubled. My cataract on my left eye is getting progressively worse. I will probably need surgery within 2 years for the cataracts if they continue to progress at the current pace. My blood sugar is better now than ever but this will not stop the cataracts from getting worse. My cataracts are from diabetes. All that I can do is to keep my blood sugar under control and wear sunglasses when I am outside, use eye drops when my eyes are dry and to take a daily vitamin supplement. My eye doctor told me that 3 people out of 100 will get double vision from Gabapentin. He told me to continue with the regimen outlined by my foot doctor. Keeping blood sugars under control is so important. By neglecting my diabetes for 2+ years, I did some harm to my body that can not be reversed.
 

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Next Friday is my appointment with my ophthalmologist to start the workup for my cataract surgery. I so wish I could have both eyes done at once because it's an all-day trip for us to get to this doc & will be another all-day trip for the surgeries. But my left eye is the only one really bad (it's very dry tonight & I need to get up & use the drops), so I'll just have to see what they decide. I think mine are just from old age . . . my sugars weren't elevated until October 2008, but the cataracts have been growing for years.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Next Friday is my appointment with my ophthalmologist to start the workup for my cataract surgery. I so wish I could have both eyes done at once because it's an all-day trip for us to get to this doc & will be another all-day trip for the surgeries. But my left eye is the only one really bad (it's very dry tonight & I need to get up & use the drops), so I'll just have to see what they decide. I think mine are just from old age . . . my sugars weren't elevated until October 2008, but the cataracts have been growing for years.
Do you wear glasses? Are your eyes real sensitive to light? My eyes are so sensitive to light. The eye doctor said that when you have cataracts that your eyes get sensitive to light. The next time I need a full prescription change, I am thinking about getting the transition lenses, even for my computer glasses. There are alot of windows in my house and there are usually lights on in every room and my eyes are sensitive to artificial light as well as day light. I totally understand about your wish to have cataract surgery for both eyes, but I was told that they usually don't do cataract surgery until your eyeglass prescription can't be corrected so that you can see 20/20. I thank God for Walmart Vision Center. I usually pay to see the eye doctor about once every 6 months and they have changed my prescription for free several times. Since July 2009, my prescription has changed four times. I have three pair of eyeglasses just laying around. I keep them in case my prescription changes and I can just get the lenses put in an old frame. I have to put a new pair of glasses in my monthly budget since I can't control my ever changing eyes.:roll:
 

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I'm horribly myopic and have been my whole life. Prob'ly needed glasses as a toddler, but the problem wasn't noticed until I started school. By that time I was VERY near-sighted already.

Until the advent of polycarbonate lenses, my glass lenses were very thick & heavy. Even my poly lenses are 1/2" thick on the outer rims, but at least they're lightweight. It's been easier with titanium & poly specs, but they're very expensive & I can expect to pay in excess of $500 when I need new ones, by the time they get the extreme prescription, trifocals, etc. combined. For that reason alone, I have never added transitions to the combo, since it would add another $100 to the cost. But I always wear quality sunglasses just to protect what little vision I have left.

It's been years since my vision could be corrected to 20/20. I went in last year hoping they could do some tweaking to help me get through the final year before Medicare would kick in for the surgery, but they said nothing could be done - I'd have to live with the blur. About three years ago they told me to just say when, and we'd do the cataracts. But I didn't have healthcare coverage, so that was that.

Thank heaven I can enlarge the fonts on the computer!
 

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Sorry you both are having such troubles with your vision, I have glasses myself and know what it's like to not have exact prescriptions and it sucks so I can only imagine how crappy the cateracts are. Both my mom and my grandpa have had them removed, so don't worry to much about the procedure but I would definitely look around to find a good person to perform it, this isn't the kind of thing you go with lowest price on, just find a good surgeon on your medical plan.

Shanny, how much longer until medicare can kick in and take care of the surgery?
 

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Shanny, how much longer until medicare can kick in and take care of the surgery?
Monday mornin'!!!

My Medicare kicks in Monday and my appointment is Friday. Hope they have a slot in OR really quick! :D

You are so right about getting the best docs. I've always used ophthalmologists just because I have so little sight left, and this is why we get our eye care at University of Missouri instead of locally. I love my local doc, but I'm not gonna trust his local colleagues with my eyes.

Any time you need an invasive procedure done, go to the best guys who do a lot of 'em. They can get in & get out in lots less time which means less time under anesthesia and fewer mistakes.
 

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Yeah like for me my work relies on my eye sight so I couldn't afford losing it. So I have to take good care of it. It's expensive but costs less then losing your sight =)
 

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The only real reason I need trifocals is at the computer. lol! Otherwise I'd be fine with just (cheaper!) bifocals, but I need that middle distance for the computer.

Just you wait, Isisagate . . . your turns comin'! heheh!
 

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Nope I don't believe it so I won't let it be.... Diabetes was enough....

My dad was diagnosed type 2 and when I say him not trying I wished I had it so I could show him how to live... 6 months later... Type 1. When I was in elementry school I remember looking into a mirror and saying "I would look good in glasses" and soon after I had them.... So either way I'm learning to keep my mouth shut...


To bad it doesn't work on stuff like...

I'm gonna win the lottery and have the noble peace prize handed to me for doing nothing. :attention::spider:

ohh well I will keep trying those ones...
 

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Finally home from my ophthalmology appointment, and still don't have a surgery date. But other news is good - pressure is both eyes is fine, and no diabetic retinopathy. Doing both cataracts at once is not an option - Medicare won't allow it in the first place, and the docs really would rather do them separately too.

If I don't hear from their surgery coordinator by next Friday, I'm to contact her for the date . . . they do cataracts only one day a week, so whenever I get in, it'll be a Thursday. Swell! :twitch:

It's always a long tiring day for us . . . and we take Fritz along since it would be hard on him being left in the house so many hours. He loves riding in the car, and it was a cool day, so he was comfortable in the parking garage just a few steps outside the door of the clinics. We went to check on him several times & give him water, walk him around on his leash (which is very strange activity for all concerned, since he's a country dog & very rarely on the end of a leash! lol!). It isn't like anybody is gonna start messing with a mature male German shepherd who's "guarding" his master's automobile.


Then when all the exams were finally done, we slipped into the hospital cafeteria for a bite of supper. Terrific salad bar & I got a beautiful big filet of cod to go with my salad. Very tasty.

DH drove us home & while I was pretty weary, I didn't sleep en route & have since caught my second wind. Had mixed up a batch of Heloise olive spread before we left this morning, and had a little "dessert" of olive spread on toast . . . it is so delicious!

Life is good! :D :D :D
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I am glad you got some good news! Hopefully, you will get your surgery date soon and you will no longer be seeing through a cloud. I snickered to myself when I read you took the dog with you! As a child we named our first dog "Fritz" he was a mini dachshund. He ran the household. That dog was so stubborn, there were times that we could not get him out of a certain room when we were going to go away...that dog even went to church a couple of times. I love dogs & cats! Anyway, thanks for the low down!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Need Cataract Surgery-Really Worried

Went to the ophthalmologist today for 6 month check up and found out that my cataracts are bad. When I went to the optometrist a month ago, he said I was 10 years away from surgery. Now another eye doctor tells me that I need to have my cataracts removed, in both eyes. My eyeglass prescription changed in one months time. The doctor said that I will be forever changing eyeglass prescriptions and will be seeing more ghost images if I don't have the right prescription. The cataracts are progressing rapidly and the doctor said this is the best thing for me. He said people with diabetes are 60% more likely to have cataracts. I am scared. I had so many tests done on my eyes today and this is a huge eye practice and I believe that their equipment is much more sophisticated than what an optometrist has. There are risks to the surgery. I have never seen such a laundry list of possible complications. I thought about getting another opinion but I am afraid this will confuse me even more. I went ahead and signed the paperwork and set a surgery date. I am still apprehensive about the surgery though.
 

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You'll be fine . . . just follow me! heheh! Did they tell you that the implant will be ground to your prescription, so you may not need glasses as much as before? That's the part I LOVE about this! :D

I'm glad you're consulting with an ophthalmologist. Optometrists just don't have the medical background to treat all of our diabetes-related eye problems. I use the ophthalmologists even just for vision checks, since I have to see one anyhow for diabetes.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
You'll be fine . . . just follow me! heheh! Did they tell you that the implant will be ground to your prescription, so you may not need glasses as much as before? That's the part I LOVE about this! :D

I'm glad you're consulting with an ophthalmologist. Optometrists just don't have the medical background to treat all of our diabetes-related eye problems. I use the ophthalmologists even just for vision checks, since I have to see one anyhow for diabetes.
I will follow you and after you have your surgery, I may ask alot of questions. I didn't have many questions for the doctor until I had to sign all of the paperwork. Did they try to sell the crystalline lens to you? My doctor told me that lens would be an additional $2600 per eye. If I had that type of cash, I would have that implanted. I picked up my prescription eye drops today. They told me that those eye drops are generic, if so, I would hate to see the brand name cost. I have to find something positive about the surgery and that is the fact that my vision will be better. My surgery date for my left eye is May 12. I have plenty of time to search the net for answers to my questions. I will not know that surgery date for my right eye until after May 19. Oh by the way, did they tell you that you would need new glasses? My health insurance will pay for the cost of new glasses following the cataract surgery. I don't have vision insurance. My insurance kind of follows Medicare guidelines and Medicare will pay for one pair of glasses following cataract surgery. You probably already know that. Still kind of scared.
 

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No mention made of a crystalline lens . . . I know it's a foldable lens though - and the incision is so small it requires about one stitch to close. They dissolve the old clouded lens with laser, then vacuum out the debris & insert the foldable lens which unfolds & pops into place. It takes 29-30 minutes total!

Have been advised to hold all my diabetes meds the day before surgery, as well as my 81mg aspirin for the week. That's about it. I'm afraid I'm so excited that it's bumping my BG! Better get a grip on this, hadn't I?! :D

Oh yeah - I'll need new glasses . . . my frames are falling apart as it is, and my old lenses are about half-an-inch thick. So I'll need everything new. I just don't know if they'll do it after THIS surgery, or wait until I get the other eye done.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Shanny, the eye doc said that the crystalline lens would be the best lens to have implanted. You may not need to have to use glasses if you use this lens. Too bad it costs so much. I would love to not wear glasses ever again. I am getting what they called the standard lens. Insurance companies only pay for this lens.
 

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From what they said, I won't need glasses for distance at all. But for close work, reading, computer - I may need reading glasses. Shoot - I can live with that - back when I wore contact lenses, I still needed reading glasses then. I could prob'ly even find those old ones if I'd clean out a few closets around here! :D
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I hope this is the case. I tried contacts when I was in my 20's but was allergic to the thermisol in the solutions. I tried every solution there was. So, I just stuck to glasses. Shanny-after you get your new eye-splurge if you can afford to and get some new specs! :)
 

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If Medicare includes new specs after this type of procedure, then they should be covered. I'll keep my fingers crossed. At least they won't be the $600-a-pair kind I've needed all these years with trifocals & half-inch-thick lenses. Thank heaven! ;)

And hey! I'll have to remove the specs from my avatar! How about THAT?! heehee

I hope this is the case. I tried contacts when I was in my 20's but was allergic to the thermisol in the solutions. I tried every solution there was. So, I just stuck to glasses. Shanny-after you get your new eye-splurge if you can afford to and get some new specs! :)
 
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