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  • Detached flap and corneal abrasion

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    Old 11-13-2011, 03:24 PM   #1
    lasereyeballz
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    Detached flap and corneal abrasion

    I am 26 and have worn glasses for distance vision for the last 15 years. I had been considering laser eye surgery for a very long time and finally went through with it last Thursday (Nov 10, 2011).

    The surgery itself was as painless as everyone had said it would be. I was given Valium and numbing eye drops. The surgeon did the right eye first. It went smoothly and quickly. From where I was sitting, the surgery on the left eye appeared to go similarly, but afterward the surgeon checked my eyes and decided to administer a few more drops to the left eye. He didn't comment on why, and it didn't occur to me to ask why. I figured he was the doc, and if he saw that I needed a few more drops, so be it.

    From there I was moved out of the laser suite and into one of the exam rooms. After letting everything settle for a few minutes, both the surgeon and the opthamologist looked me over and said everything looked perfect and I was cleared to go home. My vision was still blurry, but that was to be expected immediately following surgery. About 5-10 minutes after we had been on the road, I felt as though I had something in my left eye. I didn't want to touch it, so I asked my designated driver to pull over and give it a look. She told me the flap had come undone and was "crumpled" in the corner where the hinge was. We turned around and went back to the clinic.

    I explained what had happened to the staff, and they moved me to one of the exam rooms while they waited for the laser suite to free up. Back under the machine I went. The surgeon reset the flap and placed a contact lens over it make sure it would hold this time. I asked how common this was and was told that out of the couple of hundreds of surgeries they do each month, this sort of thing happens once or twice.

    I was then moved back to the exam rooms and told to wait with my eyes closed to help things settle. I dozed off, probably for about 10 minutes or so. Afterward I was looked over by both the surgeon and the opthamologist again and both said everything looked perfect again. We headed for home once more.

    I fell asleep on the ride back and continued my nap after arriving home. When I woke up I could see very well out of the right eye and had no discomfort there. Unfortunately the vision in my left eye was very blurry (significantly worse that before the surgery), and the eye was incredibly irritated. I wanted to attribute this to the contact lens -- I have never worn them before and was told by many people that they can be very irritating until you get used to them -- but I suspected that the issues that came up earlier were more likely the problem. Everything I tried to look at with only the left eye seemed equally blurry regardless of distance. I was even unable to see things at such a close distances that I would have had no problem seeing them clearly before the surgery. I started the prescribed post-op drops.

    The next morning my condition had not changed. At the one-day post-op appointment I tested between 20/20 and 20/15 in the right eye, but the vision in my left eye was awful. I couldn't even say for sure that the black splotches I saw on the eye chart were letters. The surgeon looked my eyes over again... the right eye looked perfect, but the corneal flap over the left had a wrinkle in it, and he said he would smooth it out. I took a Valium and waited for him to finish with his other patients. I wasn't given any numbing drops until I was under the machine again. This time the procedure was much more uncomfortable. I don't know if this was because the drops didn't have adequate time to settle or because my eye was already irritated. I do remember a twinge of pain at one point. The surgeon only smoothed out the flap. He did not cut again or even lift the flap.

    Following the surgery, I sat around the office in a very uncomfortable state for about 15 minutes. It felt like I had been quite seriously poked in the eye. The surgeon looked me over, said the flap seemed to be bonded and unwrinkled, but he didn't want me to go home just yet. He suggested I go get something to eat and come back in about an hour so he could look me over again. I did, and once again he said things looked perfect. We made an appointment for the following day (which I very much appreciated because it was a Saturday and their office is typically closed).

    Friday evening was more of the same... naps, drops, and an irritated left eye with no improved vision. The vision in my right eye seemed to get a little worse, but I was told that fluctuations were normal this early in the healing process.

    At Saturday's appointment the surgeon said I had a corneal abrasion in the left eye. It would take 3-5 days to heal. Until that point my vision isn't expected to be very good at all.

    It's now Sunday evening, and of course not much has changed. I have another appointment tomorrow morning. They might be removing the contact lens at that appointment or they might wait until later in the week.

    I have the information and reassurance that my surgeon has given me, but I'd really like to hear from people with the the same experience. Has this sort of thing happened to anyone else (detached flap, corneal abrasion)? What can I expect in terms of healing time and my vision in the long term? Does this situation sound like it was handled properly? Any chance the flap was damaged when it was detached after the first surgery to the point that it won't focus light correctly at all any more? The vision in my left eye has been the same since the first day, but I've had two different problems (a wrinkle followed by the abrasion). Is visual quality typically similar for these two types of problems? Any questions I should be sure to ask at the next appointment?

     
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    Old 07-24-2012, 08:13 AM   #2
    aniba
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    Re: Detached flap and corneal abrasion

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by lasereyeballz View Post
    I am 26 and have worn glasses for distance vision for the last 15 years. I had been considering laser eye surgery for a very long time and finally went through with it last Thursday (Nov 10, 2011).

    The surgery itself was as painless as everyone had said it would be. I was given Valium and numbing eye drops. The surgeon did the right eye first. It went smoothly and quickly. From where I was sitting, the surgery on the left eye appeared to go similarly, but afterward the surgeon checked my eyes and decided to administer a few more drops to the left eye. He didn't comment on why, and it didn't occur to me to ask why. I figured he was the doc, and if he saw that I needed a few more drops, so be it.

    From there I was moved out of the laser suite and into one of the exam rooms. After letting everything settle for a few minutes, both the surgeon and the opthamologist looked me over and said everything looked perfect and I was cleared to go home. My vision was still blurry, but that was to be expected immediately following surgery. About 5-10 minutes after we had been on the road, I felt as though I had something in my left eye. I didn't want to touch it, so I asked my designated driver to pull over and give it a look. She told me the flap had come undone and was "crumpled" in the corner where the hinge was. We turned around and went back to the clinic.

    I explained what had happened to the staff, and they moved me to one of the exam rooms while they waited for the laser suite to free up. Back under the machine I went. The surgeon reset the flap and placed a contact lens over it make sure it would hold this time. I asked how common this was and was told that out of the couple of hundreds of surgeries they do each month, this sort of thing happens once or twice.

    I was then moved back to the exam rooms and told to wait with my eyes closed to help things settle. I dozed off, probably for about 10 minutes or so. Afterward I was looked over by both the surgeon and the opthamologist again and both said everything looked perfect again. We headed for home once more.

    I fell asleep on the ride back and continued my nap after arriving home. When I woke up I could see very well out of the right eye and had no discomfort there. Unfortunately the vision in my left eye was very blurry (significantly worse that before the surgery), and the eye was incredibly irritated. I wanted to attribute this to the contact lens -- I have never worn them before and was told by many people that they can be very irritating until you get used to them -- but I suspected that the issues that came up earlier were more likely the problem. Everything I tried to look at with only the left eye seemed equally blurry regardless of distance. I was even unable to see things at such a close distances that I would have had no problem seeing them clearly before the surgery. I started the prescribed post-op drops.

    The next morning my condition had not changed. At the one-day post-op appointment I tested between 20/20 and 20/15 in the right eye, but the vision in my left eye was awful. I couldn't even say for sure that the black splotches I saw on the eye chart were letters. The surgeon looked my eyes over again... the right eye looked perfect, but the corneal flap over the left had a wrinkle in it, and he said he would smooth it out. I took a Valium and waited for him to finish with his other patients. I wasn't given any numbing drops until I was under the machine again. This time the procedure was much more uncomfortable. I don't know if this was because the drops didn't have adequate time to settle or because my eye was already irritated. I do remember a twinge of pain at one point. The surgeon only smoothed out the flap. He did not cut again or even lift the flap.

    Following the surgery, I sat around the office in a very uncomfortable state for about 15 minutes. It felt like I had been quite seriously poked in the eye. The surgeon looked me over, said the flap seemed to be bonded and unwrinkled, but he didn't want me to go home just yet. He suggested I go get something to eat and come back in about an hour so he could look me over again. I did, and once again he said things looked perfect. We made an appointment for the following day (which I very much appreciated because it was a Saturday and their office is typically closed).

    Friday evening was more of the same... naps, drops, and an irritated left eye with no improved vision. The vision in my right eye seemed to get a little worse, but I was told that fluctuations were normal this early in the healing process.

    At Saturday's appointment the surgeon said I had a corneal abrasion in the left eye. It would take 3-5 days to heal. Until that point my vision isn't expected to be very good at all.

    It's now Sunday evening, and of course not much has changed. I have another appointment tomorrow morning. They might be removing the contact lens at that appointment or they might wait until later in the week.

    I have the information and reassurance that my surgeon has given me, but I'd really like to hear from people with the the same experience. Has this sort of thing happened to anyone else (detached flap, corneal abrasion)? What can I expect in terms of healing time and my vision in the long term? Does this situation sound like it was handled properly? Any chance the flap was damaged when it was detached after the first surgery to the point that it won't focus light correctly at all any more? The vision in my left eye has been the same since the first day, but I've had two different problems (a wrinkle followed by the abrasion). Is visual quality typically similar for these two types of problems? Any questions I should be sure to ask at the next appointment?
    Hi,

    I am also undergoing through the same complications as you were. Request you to please update me your eye's vision. Did t come back properly. Its very annoying for me...!! If you can update me it would be great help.

     
    Old 07-24-2012, 10:42 AM   #3
    lasereyeballz
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    Re: Detached flap and corneal abrasion

    Hi aniba,

    I'm sorry to hear you're going through the same thing.

    I posted this five months later on another site:

    Quote:
    Itís now 5 months after the abrasion. I test at 20/15 with both eyes together and one at a time, though it does take a little extra effort to make out everything with the eye that had the abrasion. I think this is more due to the fact that I had an astigmatism in that eye to begin with or that completely balanced vision isnít always possible. Itís pretty darn close to balanced though. Regardless, Iím seeing better than 20/20 using whichever eye I care to use, and that is way better than what I was seeing before. I would still recommend the procedure to anyone who is considering it.
    A note about the corneal abrasion for anyone who had a similar thing happen to them and is seeking the same sort of reassurance as I was looking for at the time: My doctor and everyone on the internet will tell you that the abrasion will heal up very quickly. I heard estimates between 3 and 10 days. This is technically true. According to my doctor, my abrasion did knit together during that time, but the thing you wonít often hear is how long it takes to get the vision back to normal in that eyeÖ For what felt like forever at the time, I could not see clearly out of the center of my eye. The periphery looked good, but the area where the scratch actually occurred was constantly blurring. Almost as if I was seeing double. This slowly improved for two months until it was back to normal. The reasoning is essentially that even though the wound closes quickly ó just like anywhere else on the body ó itís going to effectively ďscab upĒ as the surface returns to normal. And until that happens, that ďscabĒ is going to obscure your vision. Donít sweat it. Corneal abrasion absolutely suck, but the eyes are very good at healing. It might feel like eternity, but itíll get back to normal in its course.
    I suffered no long term problems from the abrasion, my vision is now crystal clear, and I now have no problem focusing on things with either eye.

    Hoping you have the same results,
    lasereyeballz

     
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    Old 07-24-2012, 11:49 AM   #4
    aniba
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    Re: Detached flap and corneal abrasion

    I think the abrasion you are talking about is same as edema right ?? any idea??

    One more thing will I be able to observe improvements in vision on daily basis??

    For me the complications were that doctor needed to straighten up the flap as it got folded after surgery (I don't know how) as per him I might have rubbed my eyes but as far as i know I didn't touch my eyes.

    Yesterday after 60 hours of the treatment (laser treatment) doctor did clinical surgery to straighten out the flap and inserted the lens to hold the flap..In my case he removed it today itself after 12 hours... No doubt after removing the lens, vision got improved but still very blurry...As per him he is saying now I am suffering from edema and once I recover from it, I will be able to see properly.. I think the abrasion you are talking about is same as edema right ?? any idea??

    One more thing will I be able to observe improvements in vision on daily basis??

     
    Old 07-24-2012, 06:03 PM   #5
    lasereyeballz
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    Re: Detached flap and corneal abrasion

    An abrasion is a cut. My cornea was scratched in the very literal sense. The term "edema" was never mentioned during my recovery, but from a quick googling it sounds like that might be the technical term for the "scab" I described.

    After the surgery I had printed out an eye chart and measured my vision on a daily basis. I noticed improved vision over the course of a few days at a time. Day-to-day there wasn't much improvement, but from Monday to Friday of a given week, I could definitely notice the change.

    Now I cannot tell the difference between my two eyes now and sometimes have trouble even remembering which eye was damaged.

     
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