Exposing the LASIK Scam

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 Post subject: They ruined my eyes and now offer to fix them again ?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2007 11:29 am 
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Hi everyone

I have been wearing glasses since the age of 4 and decided to get laser eye surgery done last year october at the age of 22. I have undergone the epi-lasek surgery which is suppose to be less flappening. I was on -3.25 with both eyes and am now 1.75 & 2.0. I have always been going to my aftercare appointments and was informed that they will become better over time which they haven't.

I have been suffering from dry eyes and find it hard to overcome it,I do drink lots of water, milk and fruit juices and also use eye drops and gel.

I know exactly how it feels like suffering from dry eyes, you feel twice as heavy, the opposite of free and happy and always try to avoid the computer, your tv and the sun. I have been feeling very depressed over the last few weeks and have also put my business up for sale not knowing why I feel so dead and depressed all the time.

I thought there was something wrong with me mentally and thought of going to get special help. I was thinking of going into self improvement and confidence classes. I just couldn't stop feeling negative about everything and worst of all I couldn't make proper eye contact anymore.

Reading the messages on this forum showed me that I was not mentally ill or have a confidence problem. It was all the cause of laser eye surgery gone wrong. It basically screwed up my life making me feel suicidal all the time, always having the thought that nothing is going to get better and that no one understands that I am not this bad of a person.

Telling myself when facing someone that I don't want to look at you like this but can't change it because of turning my eyes from fresh hawaii to the dessert of arabia.


The worst part of everything is however the affects it makes on my loved ones. My family who is always feeling depressed when they are around me, this just gives you the thought of suicidal, watching other people suffer because of you.


I went for the epi-lasek surgery in the uk where I live and was told that because my eye sight was so bad to start with, that I would need a re-treatment. I have booked in for a re-treatment on monday and will also go through a consultation before to discuss absoloutly everything.


Has anyone on here done the epi-lasek surgery who needed re-treatment and can tell me if the 2nd treatment done the magic for them or if it made things even worse. I just don't agree with the idea of wearing glasses as they don't give you the full 360 degree clear sight, you always have gaps on the sides and you vision will never improve but always stay at the correctiveness of the glasses.

I also tried contacts and just can't live with them for the rest of my life, mainly due to the dryness they cause. I use to wear them before and felt like terminator.

From your point of view, do you think I should go for the re-treatment or not. If so why ?


Thanx for all the info and get well soon to those who feel like me


wali from the uk (-_-)


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 Post subject: They ruined my eyes and now offer to fix them again ?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2007 12:50 pm 
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So it sounds like you have dry eyes and overcorrection as a result of your epi-LASEK. You're right, epi-LASIK is a surface treatment and is less 'flappening' :wink: .

I don't know why you were told that you would need a retreatment up front because of your high prescription. -3.25 is not high myopia. High myopia is over -6.0 diopters of myopia. Did you also have significant astigmatism?

Do you have a copy of an old prescripion from before your surgery? The astigmatism (cylinder) is the 2nd set of numbers and the 3rd set is the axis of your astigmatism. If you could tell us whether or not you had astigmatism and how much that would be helful.

Being overcorrected at 22 isn't as big a deal as it may be later. As for the dry eye... nothing worked for me but high doses of antioxidant vitamins. I also take fish oil and I'm not sure how much that helps.

You can try rice baggies - put uncooked rice in the toe of a thin sock and tie a knot. Microwave the rice baggie for around 45 seconds and place them on your eyes to melt your meibomian gland secretions. Very soothing!

All forms of corneal refractive surgery damage corneal nerves leading to dry eye. If you are not very far out from your surgery you may see some improvement in your condition over time.

Also there is a company called Panoptyx that makes really sporty sunglasses that have seals in them to keep moisture in.

Read the entire dry eye section of this site and you'll find lots of tips for dealing with dry eye. Unfortunately it tends to be a chronic condition for some. You will learn which therapies work best for you and give you maximum benefit. In the meantime it wouldn't hurt to see a psychiatrist and try some antidepressants. Many patients who never needed antidepressants before really benefit from them after a bad surgery.

You are young, and young people are resilient. You can't let this unfortunate surgical outcome ruin your life. You also don't want something like this to ruin someone else's life... right? So make sure you speak out about your problems with your surgery so that other people don't make the same mistake.

You should also consider telling your doctor exactly how this surgery has impacted your life. He/she should know.

Your family loves you and losing you would hurt them worst of all. I know one patient who was very suicidal at one time and is now in love again and full of hope. Where there's life there's hope!

Retreatment will damage more corneal nerves and you'll have to start the healing process all over again. Since you're overcorrected they would have to do a hyperopic surgery to correct you. These surgeries tend to be more difficult and have less predictable outcomes than surgeries for myopia.

If I were you I would see if I could live with the overcorrection and concentrate on the dry eye symptoms!

Let us know how many months ago you had surgery and what your full pre-surgery prescription was!

Thanks!

_________________
We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark. The real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light. -Plato


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2007 4:08 pm 
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Wali, I would proceed with extreme caution if I were you. I would have a frank talk with your surgeon and ask as many questions as you can. In you case, I would be particularly concerned about the following

1. Having another operation could make your dry eyes much worse. It is best to wait until they have stabilized first.

2. -3.25 should be have quite easy to correct. The fact that they were overcorrected by such a large margin was worrying. Morover, farsightedness is much more difficult to treat than nearsightedness by laser.

3. You must also know your current corneal thickness before proceeding. I wonder if your corneas were already thin in the beginning?

In any case, I would strongly advise against having both eyes treated at the same time. If in doubt, you should seek a second opinion.


Best of luck

-Derek


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2007 2:43 pm 
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Hi everyone

Thanx for all your replies, I have had the operation done in october 2006. I have just returned from the clinic after a long chat with the consultant and not the actual surgeon.

I asked him why my surgery went wrong and was told that the surgery went fine but the healing process on all patients is different. He said that 5% of patients will need an enhancement treatment. He also said that I have some scarring in my eyes which will heal over time.

He told me that If I would would have done a lasik procedure over the epi one that it would be much easier for him to correct the error. He is not willing to do the enhancement treatment today as I am currently suffering from dry eyes, he therefore asked me to take some flax seed oil tablets to get rid of the dry eyes and see him back again in 4 weeks time.

This should give me some more time to consider that enhancement treatment and get some independant advice. I recieved a prescription and ordered a new pair of glasses.

I have also got some information on how my eyes were before and after the operation:

Before the operation (7.10.2006):
Cornea thickness: right 557 left 553

After the operation (11.06.2007):
Cornea thickness: right 486 left 496


My prescription before the operation (7.10.2006):

Right eye
+0.25/-3.50x5
Left eye
00/-3.25x167


Prescription after the operation (11.06.2007):

Right eye
+1.25/-2.50x12./2
Left eye
+1.00/-2.25x160



The person with whom I had a consultation done today is a different surgeon to the one that done my surgery and is telling me that he can fix all the errors and that it is entirely my decision to proceed with an enhancement treatment.

I don't really know where to go from here or what to do with my eyes as I don't know if I can trust them again. Can someone with some experiance shed some light on my case please :-)


wali (-_-)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2007 4:33 pm 
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Wali, thanks for posting more information. I am not completely sure whether I understand all the figures correctly but it seems that astimagtism was your main problem. It seems that you have a complicated problem. I would highly recommend that you seek a second opinion. At 22, you are too young to have your eyes messed up any further.

One surgeon I could recommend in the UK is Mr Christopher Liu of Brighton

http://www.lasik-eyes.co.uk/surgeons/su ... .asp?id=56

http://www.nuffieldhospitals.org.uk/az_ ... ackto=cons

The is the current President of the British Society For Refractive Surgery, and Past President of the Medical Contact Lens & Ocular Surface Association. He gave me advice on how to deal with my complications. More importantly, he did put his eyes where his mouth was: he has had LASIK himself and therefore understands what it is like to be a patient.

Best of luck!

Derek


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2007 1:17 am 
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Wali,

Taking flax seed oil is probably not going to cure dry eyes in 4 weeks.

LASIK should NEVER be performed on corneas less than 500 microns thick.

_________________
Broken Eyes

"The price good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men." Plato


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 Post subject: Scarring heals over time?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2007 8:02 pm 
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Hi wali,

If you had surgery in 2006, what makes your surgeon think that your 'scarring' will heal over time? You had epi-LASIK which is a surface treatment. Surface treatments are more likely to cause haze, which often does NOT resolve over time. Ask your new surgeon if the 'scarring' he sees could be called 'haze'.

No form of corneal refractive surgery is 'good', but surface treatments are VASTLY superior to treatments that create a flap (LASIK). I have heard of surface treatments performed over LASIK in cases where the cornea was thin, or to prevent risk of relifting the flap. You already have dry eye. Now your new surgeon is suggesting that you have a procedure that will SEVER corneal nerves? That's what happens when the flap is cut.

You would THINK that a surgeon would be suggesting another surface treatment to preserve corneal tissue since you now have THIN CORNEAS and to offer a 2nd chance to get rid of some of that 'scarring' which is probably haze.

Surgeons use agents such as mitomycin C to avoid inducing haze (mitomycin C has its own risks and problems - beware). Taking high doses of vitamin C before and after surgery is much safer but may not be as effective in preventing haze in susceptible individuals.

In my opinion, all LASIK surgeons are quacks and your new surgeon sounds worse than most.

It would be NICE if 4 weeks of OIL SUPPLEMENTS could cure dry eye that is a result of surgically induced NERVE DAMAGE but that's not the case. Unless those oils could magically repair the nerve damage the only benefit you would realize is MAYBE some reduction in symptoms due to improved tear quality. You will still be stuck with the root cause of your dry eye, the NERVE DAMAGE your SURGEON caused.

_________________
We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark. The real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light. -Plato


Last edited by Scientist on Tue Jun 12, 2007 8:14 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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 Post subject: You had high astigmatism and were close to plano
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2007 8:08 pm 
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Quote:
My prescription before the operation (7.10.2006):

Right eye
+0.25/-3.50x5
Left eye
00/-3.25x167

Prescription after the operation (11.06.2007):

Right eye
+1.25/-2.50x12./2
Left eye
+1.00/-2.25x160


Hi wali - The prescription you posted indicates you were NOT ~-3 or so diopters myopic! Your problem was fairly high astigmatism. High astigmatism is not so easy to correct. You are left with SIGNIFICANT residual astigmatism and are now hyperopic as a result of your first surgery.

I would suggest hard contacts if you can stand them. I don't know if 'soft lenses for astigmatism' would work for you but you could ask about that. It may be possible to address both your overcorrection and astigmatism with some type of contact lens - I know this is a tough thing to consider when you are already suffering from dry eyes. Some patients with dry eyes do 'OK' with lenses and sometimes they even feel that the lenses seem to protect their sensitive, dry, damaged corneas from breezes.

I would not suggest more surgery. You are very young and you don't want to risk more precious corneal tissue from your thin corneas on today's woefully inadequate technology.

Read the dry eye section of this site to get tips on treating the symptoms of your dry eye. Over time you will learn what makes you feel more comfortable and adapt. Don't give up hope - try some glasses to correct your residual and induced prescription. That may fix your visual symptoms, make you feel MUCH better... and also protect your eyes somewhat from breezes. You can also experiment with contact lenses and see if you can tolerate them.

But stay away from surgeons who want to blast your corneas with lasers. I know people in their 20's whose corneas are ruined by surgeons and their lasers.

_________________
We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark. The real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light. -Plato


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2007 5:46 am 
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Broken Eyes wrote:
Wali,

LASIK should NEVER be performed on corneas less than 500 microns thick.


Would the same go for a topo-guided treatment? Just from a corneal perspective.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2007 3:51 pm 
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Thin corneas (under 500 microns) should not have any form of LASIK.

Retreatments (flap lifts) should be based on the residual stromal thickness (RST) which is usually an unknown until the flap is lifted. Any retreatment that takes the RST below 300 is too risky, in my opinion. This would eliminate most patients from having a topo-guided or wavefront-guided flap lift retreatment.

Surface retreatments (topo or wavefront or conventional) are a different matter -- the flap is not really contributing to the strength of the cornea anyway. But the problem with surface retreatments is 1) they are not FDA approved, 2) you lose your Bowman's layer, 3) they use a toxic substance called MMC, 4) they are less predictable than primary surgeries, 5) they can make matters worse instead of better.

_________________
Broken Eyes

"The price good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men." Plato


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2007 6:54 pm 
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I know this post is kind of old but just wanted to add my 2 cents. I wouldn't go for any retreatments or "enhancements". If they screwed it up the first time what makes them think they won't again. When my surgery went wrong they said an enhancement could be done. I just didn't trust them so I never did it. I didn't want my eyes further damaged. I don't know exactly what additional risks there are for enhancements but the thought of having my flap lifted again makes me cringe.


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 Post subject: Flap re-lifts should make anyone cringe
PostPosted: Sat Nov 24, 2007 4:12 pm 
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When your flap is relifted, the corneal nerves that did manage to grow back are ripped apart, and you risk having your flap torn and also epithelial ingrowth.

There is opportunity to accumulate even MORE junk under your flap, and you increase your risk of DLK.

Torn flaps, epithelial ingrowth and DLK can all cause permanent vision loss.

_________________
We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark. The real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light. -Plato


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