Laser Eye Surgery at Optilase with Doug Howlett

06 Jun 2012

A conversation with Doug Howlett

Laser eye surgery was first introduced in the 1970s and is now one of the most advanced and commonly performed surgeries worldwide with over 30 million people worldwide opting for this life changing procedure. Did you know that Tiger Woods, Courtney Cox and Brad Pitt have all had laser eye surgery, and closer to home, Munster Rugby star and ex All Black player, Doug Howlett had laser eye surgery at Optilase in Cork last summer.


Doug Howlett commented:


“I really can’t believe how this has changed my life, it was easily one of the best decisions I have ever made. I woke up the next day to a whole new world and was back at light training the following week - I just wish I had done it sooner!”


Optilase was one of the first independent clinics in the country and has state-of-the-art clinics in Cork, Dublin, Waterford, Belfast and Derry, and more recently a clinic in Galway, Longford and Athlone. Their experienced team of surgeons has carried out over 40,000 laser eye surgery procedures, and are leaders in their field, in Ireland, Europe and Worldwide.


The Cork team is comprised of resident Con­sultant Ophthalmic Surgeon, Dr Conall Hurley from Cork; Laser Optometrists Marie O’Keeffe FAOI and Dan O’Brien FAOI; Clinic Manager, Louise Carty also from Cork, along with a dedicated medical team.


We spoke to Doug Howlett about his experience to find out more!


1. Why did you choose to have laser eye surgery?


After years of battling with glasses, losing lenses on the side of the pitch or having one poked out during an important match, I thought it was high time I did something about it! I knew lots of people who had laser eye surgery at Optilase and they all described how straight forward and painless the procedure actually is, and how much it can change your life.


2. Why did you choose Optilase for laser eye surgery?


A friend actually suggested and recommended Optilase. I already knew they had an excellent reputation and track record. As a professional sportsman in particular, I wanted the best possible treatment available. I went for a consultation and was so impressed with Optilase and surgeon, Dr Conall Hurley; I knew I was in the safest and best possible hands.


3. Was it painful?


Of course I was slightly apprehensive on the day of surgery but the team really made me feel at ease. I had incredible confidence in my Surgeon, Mr Hurley, and I was right. The procedure is actually as painless as they say! Sure, it’s a bit uncomfortable which is to be expected but it takes just a few minutes per eye. From the very next day, at my post-op consult, I was starting to see clearly, without the help of glasses or lenses. It took just a few weeks for vision to fully settle down, to a level an incredible “better than 20:20”! I attended each of my follow up appointments, one day, one week, one month, three months and six months after surgery, which was standard, just to check progress, which was nothing short of perfectly straight forward.


4. What difference has laser eye surgery made to your life?


Laser eye surgery has completely changed my life! I can’t believe the difference it has made. I just wish I hadn’t waited so long! I definitely have one less thing to think about on the rugby pitch!


5. Would you recommend laser eye surgery at Optilase?


I’d recommend Optilase to everyone. In fact, Denis Hurley had laser eye surgery at Optilase just a couple of weeks ago! The team at Optilase are world class, my main advice is just don’t wait!


To arrange a free consultation or for further information phone: +353 1 223 8821 or email or visit:

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