Sunday, August 26, 2007

Lazic Eye Operations - 101

A little over a month ago, i placed a request on my blog on any information regarding the subject of Lazic eye operations, prose and cons; i basically wanted to learn from the experiences of others.

Unfortunately, i did not get a single response. That is rather sad and in my mind, there could only be two apparent reasons, one being that people are just not as helpful as they were in the past, or two, that i do not have the required number of visitors to my blog and therefore, less of a change of find someone who has prior knowledge of such a procedure.

For the sake of preserving any remaining flicker of belief in the goodness of humanity, I’ll blame it on the latter.

NOW, for those of you who have never considered performing the operation, or have, but require an insiders look into the nuts and bolts, please divulge yourself of the following description of my experience:

I flew to Shiraz to see DR Mersal Mehryar, a leading Ophthalmologist Vitreoretinal Surgeon in Iran.

The details on his card:
Dr Mersal Mehryar
Ophthalmologist Vitreoretinal Surgeon
(Member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology)
Shiraz, Iran, Tel + 987112275524.
Location: Aram Clinical Building, Falakay Danesjoo (Student’s Roundabout), Shiraz.

I had previously arranged for an appointment so there would be no risk of delays or having to wait behind a huge queue of patients to see the Doctor. Yet, the patent waiting room was jam packed, and I saw the doctor two hours after my appointment time. I later found out that since DR Mehryar, was one of the leading Ophthalmologist Vitreoretinal Surgeon in Shiraz, it was to be expected and I was rather fortunate to get the operation performed after just two days of tests and visits.

Day One;
When I first saw the doctor, he asked what the purpose of my visit was, this i thought to be a bit odd but later realised that he not only performed 'Lazic eye operations' but was a specialist in his field and patients from all over the country and abroad came to see him, simply put, anything to do with eyes, he was the man.

I was sent of into the waiting room where an assistant administered some drops into my eyes, the purpose of which was that my pupils would get diluted and a more accurate number may be derived for my eye sight. I knew for a fact that my eye sigh was at least -4. When my pupils turn into the size of small olives i was taken back into the examination room where i met the doctor again. He performed a couple of routine eye tests using the examination contraptions you'd find at your local opticians.

The doctor observed the test results, examined my eyes using the hand held torch and then went on to explain to me the ins' and outs' of a Lazic eye operation.

He said there were basically four types of Lazic operations, of which I can only the following three names, LAZER, LAZIC, and ZIOPTIC. For my eyes, and because of the continuous use of contact lenses, the latter was the most appropriate procedure for me.

After I agreed on which procedure to be performed on me, he advised his assistant to on the required tests. I was given an examination request slip which I was to take to a clinic.

Day two:
Early the next morning I was at the door steps of the Ophthalmology Center - ‘BinagoStar Shiraz’ examination clinic, located fifteen minutes away from the doctor’s office.

There, at least six tests were performed, each one is listed below, but I won’t be able to tell you what any of them were for, the cast one was the most important for ma, and they all resulted in a ‘K’ & ‘Q’ value which was necessary for my ZYOPTIC procedure;
- Pachymetry
- Topography
- OrbScan
- Sonography
- Contrast sensitivity
- Baby vision test
* Zyoptic O.P.D. Scan - Tissue saving

The charts printed from some of these tests resembled that of those you’d see on the weather report at a meteorological center, with a map of the world and air pressure flows; a globe shape, with flowing colour band indicating low pressure on one side, with a influx of high pressure from the other, resulting in a storm somewhere in the middle, or something to that extent……there were three such charts each one showing a different weather forecast, well that’s what it looked like.

I took the results and went to the doctor’s office in the afternoon.

When DR Mehryar reviewed the charts, he looked pleases, he told that things looked very good and that the procedure would either be performed the next day (Tuesday) or the day after (Wednesday), and I’d get a call later that night to confirm the exact day. If I did not hear from them at night, I’d definitely hear from them the next morning….

Day Three:
I got a call by 7 am the next morning, confirming that the procedure would be performed the same day, and that I’d have to be present at the Ophthalmology Center by 9:00 am; I arrived five minutes to nine, a bit anxious of what was about to happen, but not afraid.

I was led into a room where I had to remove my shoes before entering. I was handed a cap to cover my hair and a green patients robe to wear over my clothes.

After wearing the gear, I joined four other patients seated in the waiting room; there was a swinging door in front of us, but since no one was entering or exiting, we could not see what was behind it. I presumed it was the operating room.

At 10:15 am the doctor arrived, said ‘hello’ and walked into the swinging doors, as he faded away, it became clear that there was a corridor behind the door, probably two to three meters long, ending in a ‘T’ shape leading to two other corridors either way.

Five minutes after the DR Mehryar walked in, I heard a nurse call out my name; I was first on the chopping block.

I got up like a brave little boy, walked towards the swinging doors, I almost felt like a cowboy walking into a saloon, pushing open the left side door with my left hand and peeking in. I was met with a nurse wearing a mask / mouth piece, she directed me to a chair and told me to hold my head up and hold my eyes wide open.

The next thing I know she’s putting drops in each eye, and tells me to relax, close my eyes, and not to open them until I was told to. It only took a couple of minutes for the drops to take effect; I could feel my eyes becoming heavy and dry, it seemed numb, but I couldn’t tell for sure. Then I hear her walk away.

Less than five minutes later, the nurse comes back and tells me to open my eyes, to get up and follow her. She led me towards the right corridor; the entrance to the Operating room was only a coupe of feet away, so all those thoughts that I had had regarding long corridors and what not, were just fictions of my over active imagination.

As I walked in, I saw a huge machine, with a white body, towering over a flat operating bed; the bed had protruding craves in at the top end, where one’s head must lay, a white sheet had been spread on top of it.

The doctor stood behind the contraption, with his operating uniform on, he had an assistant standing to his right.

The nurse told me to lye on the bed, gently glide myself upwards until my head was directly under the prods of the lazer, and I was not to raise my head, if I had done so, I’d smack my head into the machine.

The doctor greeted me again, told me not to be frightened and that it would be over very quickly, BUT, I was to follow his directions to the point.

I look directly up and see two bright beams of light, one red the other green, the doctor tell me to look at the red beam at all times.

The assistant places a plastic sheet on my face with two holes that go directly over my eyes. The doctor then takes a sponge, soaked in antiseptics, the orange and reddish stuff, and pats the areas around both my eyes. He then takes a clamp, places it in my right eye’s socket, widens the clamp so that my eyes were now wide open, then he locks the clamps in place. He tells me not to force them shut, and that if I do so, then the procedure will have to be scrapped for another more appropriate time. I really did not want that, so I kept both eyes wide open during the procedure….

He then places something that functioned like a suction, into my right eye, everything goes dark, and I feel my eye socket tightening. He removes the suction, and I think the thin cornea sheet that covered my xx was removed at this point as well. I could not feel it happen but you tend to know these things, in such circumstances.

He then rinses my eye with saline solution, I figured it was to wet my eye and cool the area before using the lazer.

As I was looking at the red beam, I hear the lazer kick in, there was a huge zapping noise, it continued for a couple of seconds and stopped, then continued again, and each time it turned on I can see a small patch of black spots in front of my eyes, I then saw the doctor scrape them off with something, I could not tell what it was, then pour some more saline solution into my eye, before continuing to turn the lazer back on again.

When he had completed, he rinsed my one last time before placing the suction back on to my eye again, then lifting it, I could not make out some things with my right eye…it had not taken more than five minutes…..he removed the clamp and started to work on my left eye.
He followed the same procedure on my left eye, and then told me to slide back down the bed. The nurse led me into the waiting room, where I was to wait until the doctor completed his other operations and was able to see us to examine the results.

When he came out, he looked at my eyes, and told me that the procedure was very successful, he then wrote down some prescription drugs and told me to visit his clinic in the evening, after the sun had set.

I could see that my sight had vastly improved, I was looking at stains on the floor and dust patches in the ceiling, but my eyes were a bit tired and I could not keep them open for long stretches at a time.

By evening, the effects of the drops had worn off and my eyes were wide open.
At the doctor’s office, he explained that I had to take the three eye drops that he had prescribed for a whole month. Every two hours for the first week, four hours for the second and six for the third week onwards.

I have not looked back since…

WARNING: when coming out of the clinic, make sure your sun glasses are on tight, and let someone who you trust lead to out until you reach home. I trusted my wife and she took this opportunity to get revenge for something or the other, she led me once right into a wall and another time into the door of a taxi.

I hope this helps and wish you the best.