Article published in Metro Herald, June 8th, 2011.
Laser eye surgery: A short-sighted Daragh Reddin discusses his spec-wearing history upon his first visit to Optilase where he discovers he is eligible for laser eye surgery.
My tempestuous relationship with eye-wear began more than 20 years ago when I was a dopey, mildly-myopic nine year- old, who’d started to struggle more and more with making out the blackboard
(not just what was written on the blackboard but the board itself). A visit from the public health optician confirmed what I’d long suspected: I would need glasses and I would need them pronto. Now, in my wide-eyed innocence I wasn’t at all perturbed by the prospect – quite the opposite. I was absolutely certain, in fact, that my new spectacles would lend me a rakish charm and sophistication that would endear me to my class-mates in a way that would have been unimaginable were I not blessed with mole-like vision. Oh, the folly. Now I’m not sure whose idea it was – it certainly wasn’t mine – but for some reason I was encouraged to opt for (ie coerced into) choosing a pair of bargain-basement, salmon pink, horn-rimmed specs that made me look a little like the simple-minded love child of Eric Morecombe and Nana Mouskouri. Thanks mum.
Suffice it to say that the adulation and popularity I’d dreamed of did not follow. And, to make matters worse, as I progressed through primary school my eyesight regressed dramatically, so that by the time
I reached sixth-class my frames were now quivering under the weight of my jam-jar prescription. In fact, had I chosen to avenge my tormenters – ‘spec-head’ was the most frequent and galling term of abuse –
there would have been a certain degree of poetic justice in bludgeoning them to death with my glasses, which were now about as heavy as a good paper weight and just as deadly.
Thank God for the Pat-Kenny-like visors which I would graduate to in secondary school; naff as they were, they were nothing if not an improvement. And at least college was a less ignominious experience,
thanks mainly to my new, though no less fraught, relationship with contact lenses. Granted, fogged-up specs became a thing of the past, but now I had to contend with dry, irritable eyes and waking up
hungover – at least once a fortnight – with morning after- the-night-before contacts clinging to my eye balls like exceptionally tenacious barnacles.
Now that my prescription has – after so many years following a steady downward trajectory – finally stabilised (at minus eight in both eyes I’d be hard pressed to recognise my own reflection in the mirror
without glasses) I decided to take affirmative action and consider laser eye surgery.
Though I’m a tad nervous about whether or not I’ll be eligible, a preliminary consultation at Optilase, one of Ireland’s most reputable laser eye clinics, sees my fears abated. Firstly, Optilase’s handsome and light-filled headquarters on Dublin’s Ely Place feels in no way hospital-like, which is a relief for a wuss like me who goes weak-kneed at the slightest whiff of disinfectant. I’m also feeling very encouraged after flicking through the guest book in the lobby which is filled with testimonials from customers who aren’t merely satisfied with their results – but positively ecstatic.
I meet with affable optometrist Michael Rogers who spends more than an hour rigorously checking my eyes for eligibility with recourse to a series of cutting-edge equipment. At the top of the check-list are prescription (Rx) and its stability, the corneal thickness and curvature, the ocular health at the back of the eye, the intra ocular pressure (IOP) as well as general health and well-being. These results need to be within certain parameters and Optilase have no qualms about saying no to those they deem unsuitable for surgery, which is nothing if not consoling. First up, my prescription is checked through a full
standard sight test which ensures its stability, while a series of non-invasive scans check the thickness and curvature of the eye. Later, an anaesthetic drop and dilating drop are placed in my eye. The former numbs the eye and is used to check IOP and recheck corneal thickness, while the latter enlarges the pupils to study the health of the back of the eye. While this is entirely painless it will render you longsighted
for the remainder of the day so if your work involves reading or using a computer you may want to bunk off for the afternoon. The good news is that I’ve passed the test and Michael begins talking
me through the two types of surgery Optilase offers
Great experience and great after care. Had 2020 vision within 24 hours with very minimal pain.
Amazing experience , amazing staff, amazing eye sight . I had lens replacement 3 months ago and would highly recommend.
I got my laser eye surgery done on April 20th and couldn’t be happier. I had one hard day of recovery, followed by dry eyes for a small while. Sleeping with the protective goggles is the hardest part, but you’re helped throughout the process by experts. I couldn’t recommend this enough and Optilase were a dream to deal with. Even if you can’t afford the treatment now, you can always talk about a payment plan and get the vision you’ve always wanted.
I could not rate high enough, consultation was extremely informative and the staff were amazing, very friendly and answered all my questions with ease.
I had a wonderful experience in Optilase in Ely Place, the staff were so kind and helpful and made me feel really comfortable. Would absolutely recommend
Couldn't rate Optilase high enough. I had Lens Replacement Surgery. My experience from the first phone call to the procedure itself and the aftercare was fantastic. All of the staff from the call centre to the staff in Carrickmines and the theatre were so helpful and friendly. Would definitely recommend .
I had my PRK done on both eyes , and im happy with the result. The post operation pain was extreme but it settled down after 4 days. Now i feel great after 2 weeks post operation no complications what so ever , other than blurry vision now and then, but its improving every day
Got LASIK in Ely Place only yesterday and officially had 20/20 vision just 24 hours later! Cannot recommend Optilase enough from my initial consultation with Aisling in Athlone to my trips to Carrickmines and Ely Place. The staff really look after you from the moment you walk in the door and make you feel so at ease from start to finish - 10 out of 10 experience!
I highly recommend this place, reliable information and care, full professionalism.
LASIK was so easy and pain free. It’s one week post surgery and my eye sight is wonderful. I couldn’t recommend enough.
I no longer need glasses,absolutely life changing.Great aftercare,lovely staff.
I have been wearing glasses for over 20 years. I always hated wearing contact lenses and I got to a time in my life that I needed a change. A friend recommended optilase, I went for the free consultation and the person that did all the exams was really nice and I felt safe and confident enough to go ahead, I was recommended the PRK. I Put on a piece of paper how much I spent and would still spend on glasses for the next 10 years, and the surgery was for sure cheaper than that. My prescription was very high, both eyes, myopia and astigmatism Optilase provided all the information I needed, in clear manner. And they always made clear that there was nothing wrong with my eyes, it was my own choice to go for the surgery. The day of the surgery I was a bit nervous, who wouldn't? But then, from the reception to the surgeon, they were all so nice and welcoming. Hernandez performed the procedure, lovely surgeon, again all information was provided the way it should. I was instructed in what I should and should not do. The actual procedure took less than 15min, I felt nothing, no discomfort or anything. The whole process is very well done by the team, if I remember well around 3 people supporting the surgery plus one other girl providing pos surgery instructions. Right after the procedure I could already see much better than before without glasses! I couldn't believe it, I cried, thanked everyone and left the clinic knowing that I made the best choice. The recovery for PRK is a bit longer, I stayed for 2 full days no phones, or any screens. In the dark. If you have a little one, I would recommend to have someone minding them, as you are very limited in what you can do for the day of and day after surgery. It is hard to open the eyes, the second day after surgery was the toughest, I thought all went wrong as the vision got worst, but again I was advised it could happen. Note that this was my experience and could be different for other people. The 3rd day I felt nothing and could see much better already. Light sensitivity was very high, and still, 6 days after surgery, but nothing that a sun glasses would not help. My vision still blurred, but I need no glasses to see, my eyes feel dry sometimes, but the eye drops provided helps with it and and am very happy with the results already, even knowing it takes a bit longer to fully recover the vision. I'm back to work (screen at 200% to make sure I dont force my eyes too much) and I have had no headaches or anything, which I would have all the time looking at screens for most of my day. I cannot recommend Optilase enough, they are amazing! If you want to do something for your self and want a place you can trust, go for it, choose Optilase. Thanks to the whole team for one of the best things I did for my self!