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    Old 03-30-2006, 01:22 PM   #1
    prtebvr
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    Anyone have PRK??

    I went in to have custon LASIK last Friday and ended up having PRK, due to something the Dr. saw on my eye.

    My vision is not that great at all (I'm just six days post-op) and have been told that hte healing process is completely different and longer than LASIK surgery.

    Has anyone here had PRK and, if so, after how long did you see an improvement? The Dr. took out my protective contacts this morning, but it seems as though I see a little better with them in. I can barely see anything on my computer screen and am unable to change the font in my work computer. I haven't read a paper in a week and, while I can see things on my TV screen, nothing is clear. Is this normal???? And, I can't drive yet.

    I went in to correct my vision and now, while I see better than I did without contacts/glasses, I don't see anywhere near as god as I did with them.

    Any information from you all is greatly appreciated.

    Thanks.

    Amy

     
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    Old 04-04-2006, 06:06 AM   #2
    bowriter
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    I had PRK on Feb.15 on my right eye and March 1st on my left eye. It will take awhile to heal. After about a week, my right eye was good enough to hold it's own and I could go ahead and prepare to have the left eye done. I had my 1 1/2 month check on my right eye and it was at 20/30 and they are suspecting it will be greatly improved by my next checkup in May. It can take a few months to get to the vision you want. My left eye is doing fine so far, but not yet at it's final vision.

    Your eye will get blurry again after they remove the band-aid lens because when they take it out, it roughs up the outer layer again (epithelium). My eyes were blurry for about 4 to 5 days after the lens came out. The blurriness will pass. I was told to expect that.

    I think each day gets better and better. The biggest changes will occur during the first month. After that, it will be more gradual and you won't notice huge changes. But changes will continue, a little at a time.

    It definately takes more patience with PRK, but it is a safer procedure than lasik and two key benefits: No flap corrections or problems with PRK and with PRK, the dry eye syndrome doesn't happen as badly as in lasik patients. With lasik, some of the nerves are severed when they cut the flap. Those nerves control the amount of fluid in the eye. Without them, the eyes are dry until the nerves grow back. With PRK, nothing is severed, so the dry eye isn't as much of a nuisance.

    The healing process may take longer, but I don't think we have all the possible side effects that lasik patients have.

    Hope this helps and gives you some encouragement!

     
    Old 04-04-2006, 12:14 PM   #3
    prtebvr
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    I'm so glad I finally heard from someone! I have been going NUTS after my surgery on March 24th. I was not quite prepared (I was supposed to have LASIK, but the Dr. saw something on one of my eye pictures and she recommended PRK (day of surgery)). My vision sucks. With and without the band-aid lenses. I went in for a follow-up exam the Thursday after the procedure and they removed the lenses. Vision was horrible. I went back in for another exam last Saturday and told them to do something to help me see, as I could not see well enough to do much of anything at work, nor could I drive. So they put in lenses w/a slight correction. It was wonderful. Nowhere near perfect, but I could drive and see better. Then this past Sunday morning, I apparently bumped my eye in my sleep and got an abrasion. So the good lense came out, another one put back in, but without the same correction, as the abrasion screwed up my vision again.
    I am completelly second-guessing this decision to have anything done to my eyes, as it's been almost two weeks and I am back to not driving.
    The Dr. keeps tellimg me to be patient, be patient. Well, I am one of the most impatient people I know. I want what I want, and I want it NOW. I am trying to have hope that everything will fall into place in the coming days. I don't know how much longer I can go w/o functioning properly. This is ridiculous. It is good to hear from someone who has actually had the procedure. Not that I doubt the Dr., but does she really know what one goes through if she hasn't gone through it herself?
    Pardon any spelling corrections. I can't see the screen that well and I have double vision. Did you have double vision, too?
    If you thnk of anything else I should expect, please let me know.
    When did you start driving, or reading a paper, or seeing your computer screen??

    Thanks!
    Amy



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bowriter
    I had PRK on Feb.15 on my right eye and March 1st on my left eye. It will take awhile to heal. After about a week, my right eye was good enough to hold it's own and I could go ahead and prepare to have the left eye done. I had my 1 1/2 month check on my right eye and it was at 20/30 and they are suspecting it will be greatly improved by my next checkup in May. It can take a few months to get to the vision you want. My left eye is doing fine so far, but not yet at it's final vision.

    Your eye will get blurry again after they remove the band-aid lens because when they take it out, it roughs up the outer layer again (epithelium). My eyes were blurry for about 4 to 5 days after the lens came out. The blurriness will pass. I was told to expect that.

    I think each day gets better and better. The biggest changes will occur during the first month. After that, it will be more gradual and you won't notice huge changes. But changes will continue, a little at a time.

    It definately takes more patience with PRK, but it is a safer procedure than lasik and two key benefits: No flap corrections or problems with PRK and with PRK, the dry eye syndrome doesn't happen as badly as in lasik patients. With lasik, some of the nerves are severed when they cut the flap. Those nerves control the amount of fluid in the eye. Without them, the eyes are dry until the nerves grow back. With PRK, nothing is severed, so the dry eye isn't as much of a nuisance.

    The healing process may take longer, but I don't think we have all the possible side effects that lasik patients have.

    Hope this helps and gives you some encouragement!

     
    Old 04-05-2006, 10:47 AM   #4
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    You are really going through a lot. I'm sorry it's not going well. I don't know why they did both eyes at once, because with PRK and the extended healing time involved, most doctors recommend getting one eye done at a time. The soonest my doctor would perform on my second eye was two weeks. They want to make sure that one eye can see well enough to carry on your daily activities (computer, driving, reading, etc), before they do the other eye. My right eye was first to go and after a week (7days) it was good enough to drive with (20/60 at least). In the meantime, while it healed, I wore my normal contact lense in my left eye to drive and read. After the right eye healed (7 days) I quit wearing the lens in my left eye because I had to have it out for 5 days prior to surgery. I was a little nervous without my security blanket, but my right eye carried me through the week. Everyday, it got better and better and the day of my left eye surgery (2 weeks after the first eye), my right eye was at 20/30. Today, it's close to 20/20 but not quite there. Feb. 15th was its surgery date, so it's been almost 2 months.

    Left eye went well, and it is seeing as it should. I had it adjusted for monovision so the best it will get will be 20/80 or 20/100. So far, I can read and drive like normal. I do know that the vision isn't quite perfect in either eye yet, but it's getting there.

    You might have had an astigmatism that caused you to get PRK. That's what I had and there is a risk of a disease that you could get in the future if you had traditional lasik. Depending on how bad the astigmatism is, the double vision (ghosting) will take longer to correct. I still have a little bit of ghosting but it improves gradually everyday. They do say that it could take up to six months for the eyes to stabilize enough to determine if corrections are needed.

    It sounds like your doctor is trying to accommodate your vision needs because other people in these posts said their doctor would not give them any lenses or glasses after surgery to get them by, which I don't understand. I think it's too early to question your doctor's skills. Healing is out of their control after the surgery is over. It sounds like she's keeping a close eye on you (other posts suggest that their doctors could care less once the procedure is done). If your doctor seems interested in your concerns, take that as a good thing. If she treats you like she could care less, then I'd question the ethics. Most doctors want their patients needs met or it gives them a bad rap.

    Since your procedure was done on March 24, I would give it another week before I start to be overly concerned. No two people heal alike. My personal opinion is that you should see good enough to drive after two weeks. By three weeks, you should be able to almost read well without strain and by one month, you should be getting by pretty well, with some healing weeks still to go. I know patience is a hard thing when you can't drive to go to work or see the computer. I only suffered that for about five days and it drove me nuts. When it affects your life and your ability to work and drive, patience is not such an easy thing to have. I empathize with you totally, but it is still early for you and the eyes are obviously still somewhat irritated. That irritation could be slowing the healing process. Go as easy on the eyes as you can for the next couple of weeks. Wear sunglasses even on cloudy days and wear them while working on the computer and watching TV. That made a huge difference for more. Less strain. Pamper the eyes, no matter how silly it looks!

    Let me know how you're doing......

     
    Old 04-05-2006, 11:36 AM   #5
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    Funny you posted today, as I was just getting ready to ask you a question...did you notice your vision comes and goes? As far as clarity goes, I mean? I've noticed I will be able to see, while nowhere near perfect, somewhat clearly for a little bit, then it gets blurry and I see double. Then it will get clear, then blurry. This goes on all day. And it doesn't get clear after I use my eye drops. It just happens. Off and on all day. I don't know if that is a good thing, or if it is something that is expected, but it sure as heck an improvement over lsat week.
    I got that abrasion on Sunday (no pain since then, as I was told to expect, thank God), and I almost want to say/hope my vision is getting a LITTLE better. Maybe that's just in my head. I don't know. I go in for another exam tomorrow morning, then on Saturday. Hopefully the injured eye will have healed enough for a corrective lense. In the mean time, I have been wearing magnifying glasses to help me and, they do help a bit.
    As far as getting both eyes done at once, I was going in for LASIK and I actually asked about having both eyes done at once w/that. That was no problem. That issue did not even come up when she informed me that the PRK was a better procedure for me.
    The astigmatism? I always thought I had it, but I guess I didn't. The procedure may have caused some, but I'm not sure yet.
    I'm just at the mercy of my eyes and time.

    Again, let me know if you experienced the vision coming and going. I'm curious about that.

    Thanks.

    Amy




    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bowriter
    You are really going through a lot. I'm sorry it's not going well. I don't know why they did both eyes at once, because with PRK and the extended healing time involved, most doctors recommend getting one eye done at a time. The soonest my doctor would perform on my second eye was two weeks. They want to make sure that one eye can see well enough to carry on your daily activities (computer, driving, reading, etc), before they do the other eye. My right eye was first to go and after a week (7days) it was good enough to drive with (20/60 at least). In the meantime, while it healed, I wore my normal contact lense in my left eye to drive and read. After the right eye healed (7 days) I quit wearing the lens in my left eye because I had to have it out for 5 days prior to surgery. I was a little nervous without my security blanket, but my right eye carried me through the week. Everyday, it got better and better and the day of my left eye surgery (2 weeks after the first eye), my right eye was at 20/30. Today, it's close to 20/20 but not quite there. Feb. 15th was its surgery date, so it's been almost 2 months.

    Left eye went well, and it is seeing as it should. I had it adjusted for monovision so the best it will get will be 20/80 or 20/100. So far, I can read and drive like normal. I do know that the vision isn't quite perfect in either eye yet, but it's getting there.

    You might have had an astigmatism that caused you to get PRK. That's what I had and there is a risk of a disease that you could get in the future if you had traditional lasik. Depending on how bad the astigmatism is, the double vision (ghosting) will take longer to correct. I still have a little bit of ghosting but it improves gradually everyday. They do say that it could take up to six months for the eyes to stabilize enough to determine if corrections are needed.

    It sounds like your doctor is trying to accommodate your vision needs because other people in these posts said their doctor would not give them any lenses or glasses after surgery to get them by, which I don't understand. I think it's too early to question your doctor's skills. Healing is out of their control after the surgery is over. It sounds like she's keeping a close eye on you (other posts suggest that their doctors could care less once the procedure is done). If your doctor seems interested in your concerns, take that as a good thing. If she treats you like she could care less, then I'd question the ethics. Most doctors want their patients needs met or it gives them a bad rap.

    Since your procedure was done on March 24, I would give it another week before I start to be overly concerned. No two people heal alike. My personal opinion is that you should see good enough to drive after two weeks. By three weeks, you should be able to almost read well without strain and by one month, you should be getting by pretty well, with some healing weeks still to go. I know patience is a hard thing when you can't drive to go to work or see the computer. I only suffered that for about five days and it drove me nuts. When it affects your life and your ability to work and drive, patience is not such an easy thing to have. I empathize with you totally, but it is still early for you and the eyes are obviously still somewhat irritated. That irritation could be slowing the healing process. Go as easy on the eyes as you can for the next couple of weeks. Wear sunglasses even on cloudy days and wear them while working on the computer and watching TV. That made a huge difference for more. Less strain. Pamper the eyes, no matter how silly it looks!

    Let me know how you're doing......

     
    Old 04-05-2006, 11:55 AM   #6
    Hating glasses
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    Amy,
    I didn't have PRK but I can tell you that I had the blurry not blurry business going on pretty regularly for the first 3-5 months. So, while they are two different procedure, it seems normal. It may be the trauma we cause our eyes from the surgery. I think it is part of the adjustment phase and, while some may not have any problems, it seems like it is more common to have some issues than not at all.

    Take care!

     
    Old 04-05-2006, 01:16 PM   #7
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    Oh, I'm having issues, alright. Seems I'm having nothing BUT issues. Hopefully things will start to clear up soon. I want to drive my car again!!


    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Hating glasses
    Amy,
    I didn't have PRK but I can tell you that I had the blurry not blurry business going on pretty regularly for the first 3-5 months. So, while they are two different procedure, it seems normal. It may be the trauma we cause our eyes from the surgery. I think it is part of the adjustment phase and, while some may not have any problems, it seems like it is more common to have some issues than not at all.

    Take care!

     
    Old 04-05-2006, 01:50 PM   #8
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    Amy,
    I'm sorry to hear that you've been having some problems. I didn't have PRK, but I did have lasik surgery. My surgery was almost nine months ago and I still have problems. Most of my issues are dry eye related though.

    I wanted to let you know that I've also had some blurry days when my eyes were really irritated or dry. I would recommend that you keep using plenty of drops. You might also want to see your doctor about your concerns. Don't forget that you paid them a lot of money for this surgery and that post-op care is included. If you think that something is wrong then I'm sure that they will see you.

    Missy

     
    Old 04-05-2006, 08:08 PM   #9
    prtebvr
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    I've already had a few post-op appointments. I have one tomorrow and one Saturday. They know exactly what my problems are. I'm just told to be patient (which is something I am not.). I was chatting w/another person who had PRK and he has been through the same things I am going through. Unfortunately for me, his healing time was quicker. Oh well. We're all different.
    Hopefully I'll get some good news tomorrow or Saturday and be told my eyes have healed more since last week. Fingers crossed

    Amy

     
    Old 04-06-2006, 10:34 AM   #10
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    Hi again....I'm glad to hear that things are getting better for you. Those first two weeks are so delicate, that if people are going to panic about their eyes, that's the time it happens. I think they could have better prepared you for what to expect as far as outcome.
    Things to expect:
    - vision will flucuate often, especially the first 2 to 3 weeks. Sometimes a slight double vision, to clear, to blurry. This is expected to happen off and on. I haven't noticed it happening much after the first month.
    - you might have some glare and halos at night. Mine was never that bad and only lasted about one week. I took the Vitamin C, so I'm not sure that's what gave me the great night vision or if I was lucky. But it can't hurt to try.
    - your eyes will often feel sore, likey they are tired. The wetting drops will help because the soreness is from dry eye. You will have a lot of this if you work with computers. When I'm not working a PC all day (like weekends), I never notice dry eye. I rarrely use those drops away from a PC.
    - perfect vision will not come quickly. Mine still isn't there yet, but it's close. Again, my right eye is almost 2 months post-op. Other PRk patients that I know said they established close to or perfect vision by 3 months.

    Hope this helps. I know I wrote you a book yesterday so I will try to keep this shorter. Let me know how your appointments go. If they are seeing you two days in a row, that tells me that they are taking good care of you...we hope!

     
    Old 04-06-2006, 03:50 PM   #11
    prtebvr
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    No need to apologize for a long reply. I look forward to them, as I know I'll be reading some good information.
    I was not at all prepared for this, as we were all expecting LASIK. The PRK was sprung on me that day just a few hours before the procedure. I had absolutely no information on it at all.
    As for the soreness, I really haven't experience that. And I work on a computer from 9-5. This week, as opposed to last week, I've been logging on to my computer at home to check mail, pay bills and surf. Last week I would come home, put my lovely sunglasses on, turn off the lights in my bedroom and listen to TV (couldn't really see/make anything out). While my vision still isn't all that great, I don't always wear the glasses, but am able to leave the lights on and sort of watch tv.
    I'm using drops like crazy. I went through the 1oz bottle of tears w/in a week last week.
    I had an appointment this morning, but the Dr. was late, again, and my ride had to go, so I left w/out seeing her. She came in as I was walking out. So I threw a couple questions at her, like when can I sleep without those darn goggles?? I hate them. When can I take a shower w/o worrying about getting water in my eyes, when can I go back to the gym, and the most important question: WHEN CAN I WEAR MAKE-UP?????
    I go back in Saturday morning. Hopefully my little abrasion I got Sunday will have healed and they can put in a slightly corrective lense to help me see better so I can start driving. I have a hockey game to go to and need to drive myself up there.
    I had a much better week this week. Last week was just absolutely HORRIBLE. I know part of the reason I am having a better week is due to the corrective lense in my left eye. Unfortunately. I would like to think it's because my eyes are healing and I can get rid of the lenses completely. I really do not like sleeping w/contacts. It feels like my eye lids are glued shut when I wake up. I'm sure you know the feeling.
    Anywho...thank you, again, for hte info. No worries about the length. Look at min!

    Here's to a good exam on Saturday (fingers crossed).

    Amy



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bowriter
    Hi again....I'm glad to hear that things are getting better for you. Those first two weeks are so delicate, that if people are going to panic about their eyes, that's the time it happens. I think they could have better prepared you for what to expect as far as outcome.
    Things to expect:
    - vision will flucuate often, especially the first 2 to 3 weeks. Sometimes a slight double vision, to clear, to blurry. This is expected to happen off and on. I haven't noticed it happening much after the first month.
    - you might have some glare and halos at night. Mine was never that bad and only lasted about one week. I took the Vitamin C, so I'm not sure that's what gave me the great night vision or if I was lucky. But it can't hurt to try.
    - your eyes will often feel sore, likey they are tired. The wetting drops will help because the soreness is from dry eye. You will have a lot of this if you work with computers. When I'm not working a PC all day (like weekends), I never notice dry eye. I rarrely use those drops away from a PC.
    - perfect vision will not come quickly. Mine still isn't there yet, but it's close. Again, my right eye is almost 2 months post-op. Other PRk patients that I know said they established close to or perfect vision by 3 months.

    Hope this helps. I know I wrote you a book yesterday so I will try to keep this shorter. Let me know how your appointments go. If they are seeing you two days in a row, that tells me that they are taking good care of you...we hope!

     
    Old 04-13-2006, 03:57 PM   #12
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    Hi, Bowriter.

    So, I had another Dr. appointment last Saturday. I believe my right eye (the one I seemed to have bumped and scratched) seems to be a bit better. After taking out the Rx lenses, I think the Dr. said my vision was better in that eye.
    I got a new pair of Rx lenses so I could function while my eyes heal. He told me they won't heal as fast if I keep the lenses in. Again, I have to have them so I can drive and work. So he told me to take them out at night. That's what I've been doing since Saturday and with out the lenses, I seem to be okay. No where near good vision (or no where near what I was before PRK). I can function: read, watch TV and get around the house. I would not even consider driving or working w/out the lenses. Although I do go on-line at home w/o them. It's a little struggle, but it's better than it was during week one.
    I will now be going in every week until otherwise instructed. I still have my moments when my vision gets a little blurry. Like right now. Other times it's pretty good.
    So, hopefully I will get good news again Saturday and will be told my vision is still improving. My eyes are still a bit rough, I was told. But, we'll see. I have a feeling this whole 'healing' process will take several more weeks, if not months.
    That's my update for now.
    Until next time...

    Amy



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bowriter
    Hi again....I'm glad to hear that things are getting better for you. Those first two weeks are so delicate, that if people are going to panic about their eyes, that's the time it happens. I think they could have better prepared you for what to expect as far as outcome.
    Things to expect:
    - vision will flucuate often, especially the first 2 to 3 weeks. Sometimes a slight double vision, to clear, to blurry. This is expected to happen off and on. I haven't noticed it happening much after the first month.
    - you might have some glare and halos at night. Mine was never that bad and only lasted about one week. I took the Vitamin C, so I'm not sure that's what gave me the great night vision or if I was lucky. But it can't hurt to try.
    - your eyes will often feel sore, likey they are tired. The wetting drops will help because the soreness is from dry eye. You will have a lot of this if you work with computers. When I'm not working a PC all day (like weekends), I never notice dry eye. I rarrely use those drops away from a PC.
    - perfect vision will not come quickly. Mine still isn't there yet, but it's close. Again, my right eye is almost 2 months post-op. Other PRk patients that I know said they established close to or perfect vision by 3 months.

    Hope this helps. I know I wrote you a book yesterday so I will try to keep this shorter. Let me know how your appointments go. If they are seeing you two days in a row, that tells me that they are taking good care of you...we hope!

     
    Old 04-25-2006, 01:09 PM   #13
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    Amy - I am glad i found you (and Bowriter for that matter) because I had PRK perfomred on March 24 too. I stumbled upon the Healthboards website and your posts whil surfing the web looking for others that have had PRK done.

    I must admit that I did not have issues as intense as yours but I have had my own problems. The day after and the following day were most uncomfortable and I could not function at work real well for the first week or so because my PC screen was so blurry. However, my discomfort pretty much stopped after the first week and since then I have just been struggling with vision. If I had to guess, I would say I am at 20/50 in my left eye and 20/60 in my right which is weird because my right eye was better than my left prior to the procedure. Anyway, Friday 4/21 marked my one month anniversary and I was starting to get nervous about not having 20/20 vision. I feel somewhat better after reading bowriter's posts about the full recovery time and I know they do not guarantee perfect vision but I still will have a hard time swallowing the fact that I paid over 4K to still wear glasses.

    What was your perscription in each eye going into the surgery?

     
    Old 04-26-2006, 10:53 AM   #14
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    Hey there both of you! I hope you are both doing okay. My vision was -5.25 (contact lense prescription) in my right eye and -6.25 for my left, or something like that. Both were bad. It's been a little over 2 months for my right eye and my doctor did a quick check on the eye chart last night for me (I was really in there to have my knee checked, but he was curious too, as to how the eyes were doing). My right eye was at about 20/25 and my left was at 20/70. My left got stronger than expected because it's set for a reading eye and was supposed to have a 20/100 prescription. But I can read just fine so I'll leave that alone!

    I know some people already at 20/15 and their procedures were done about the same time as mine. They are younger too (upper 20s) so I don't know if the younger ones heal quicker or not! Sounds crazy, huh?

    Overall, I am happy with the results because they told me my prescription was about the limit to where they will perform the procdure. Any worse, and the subtle guarantees go down. Even though Tiger Woods had -11.0 and he see's great now. Go figure.

     
    Old 04-26-2006, 11:01 AM   #15
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    Re: Anyone have PRK??

    hello Bowriter. Thank you for your posts - they have been very helpful to me. My vision was -6.0 in my right and -7.50 in my left so I must have been borderline too although I think they measured even worse eysight than that when the evaluated me for the procedure. Like I said in my last post, I think I am in the neighborhood of 20/50 20/60 with my left eye slightly better than my right which is the opposite of pre surgery.

    I really have not had any discomfort since the first week and I can get around with my vision right now but I still try to be active by playing hockey once a week and now softball so 20/50 vision is getting frustrating. I only can hope in improves in the weeks ahead.

    Tiger was -11.0?? Did he have PRK?

     
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