Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Color Corrected Pirate

New Eye
Old Eye

I had the cataract removed and a new toric lens implanted in my right eye yesterday. This lens covers distance and my severe astigmatism. I had various choices and this seemed like my best decision, there is a new accommodating multifocal lens that covers both far and near like a zoom, unfortunately my ophthalmologist reports some difficulties with midrange vision.

I talked about the lens selection process with my Doctor yesterday. He took a series of measurements last week. Each of the five or six measurements has its own algorithm, these algorithmic computations get melded and coupled with the astigmatic data and a lens that fits all the criteria gets highlighted. These specific measurements are axial length, the distance from cornea to retina, corneal curvature, lens thickness, corneal thickness, vitreous length, etc.

He said that the choices we have today are in a sequence of half diopters. I am sure that one day very soon they will be custom fit for individual eyes but for now the choices are somewhat limited.

The doctor applied a numbing agent and then scribbled some axis points on my eyeball, a strange sensation. My eyeball length is unusually large. He plotted the proper angle and slant for the new lens positioning.

I don't remember a whole lot about the procedure, talked with the quite pleasant Vietnamese anesthesiologist a moment and then I was off to la la land. I remember seeing a series of color shapes shifting around in my lovely hallucination and the next thing I know I was waking up. The operation was over and I was sporting a new intraocular lens.

My wife Leslie drove me home, me wearing thick black sunglasses to kill any glare. I stepped out of my van and looked at my Butia Capitata jelly palm. I had been told that cataracts would cause a color shift but was rather dramatic owing to the yellow tinted lens I had been looking through. Yet instead of looking more saturated for some reason the opposite was true.

My other eye that had not been operated on showed me a strong super saturated olive green, the newly operated eye showed almost no color. but a much brighter gamma and brightness. Strange. I have been seeing the world through rose colored lenses and I kind of like it.

I was a bit forlorn in the afternoon. They tell you that things will be blurry for a while but I kept worrying that I was going to be one of the 1% that fell through the cracks and had issues. After a good nights sleep I know that my worries were unfounded.

I sat in the bath and looked at the wall. The non operated side looked rather dingy, about 2200 kelvin in temperature, the new lens on the right was white balanced to about 4000 k. Like going from a low sodium to a halide light source, slightly white blue now.

A bit like the two color wheels I illustrate on the top of page. Focus is already much sharper. I think I will like this, might prove liberating, albeit expensive. Near four grand out of pocket for both eyes.

I just got back from post op. Although my ocular pressure is slightly up, I am already 20/20 in the operated eye and things will even get better with time. He seems very pleased. Will still need readers for close up.

I popped the lens out of a pair of glasses for the interim period before the left eye is operated on but the image distortion between the good and bad eye was too severe so I am currently playing pirate with an eye patch.

Looking forward to seeing normally without glasses.


Anonymous said...

What I learned from cataract surgery is that vision is mostly the brain and the input from eyes is significantly changed in the brain. So one's impression of what the surgery did will change as the brain adapts to the new inputs.

Ken Seals said...

I'm really happy your surgery has a good result. You know I'm not one to say "I told you"

Unknown said...

So glad it worked out well! Aloha, Wicki