Sunday, February 03, 2008

"Eye" am Really Nervous!

Eye just want to warn you that Eye'll probably be a bit distracted this week because my surgery date (February 7th) is fast approaching and Eye am getting really nervous!

This isn't the first surgery I've had. In fact, I've had quite a few surgeries in the past, from exploratory laprascopic surgery the year before we were married (the concern was that I might not be able to get pregnant... ha-ha!) to abdominoplasty (to attempt to give me my body back after the twin birth) to a hysterectomy (due to uterine fibroids), as well as a few other minor procedures. But this one has me stymied (st-eye-mied? sorry -- I'll stop now...) because it makes feel so much more vulnerable that the other surgeries.

I mean, the eyes are the "windows to the soul" right? They are the part of the body that we tend to use (usually, anyway!) use when we communicate with others and they are where we tend to focus our attention (usually, anyway!) when others communication with us. The eyes show us love and compassions and pain and happiness and longing, and I simply can't imagine not having both that window and that mirror. I know, I know -- this surgery doesn't actually touch the eyeball itself and going blind isn't even a possibility. So maybe I'm just being dramatic. But still, I'm nervous!

So what will they be doing? Here's an official explanation, along with a few graphics, thanks to this site:

"Eye muscle surgery, or "strabismus surgery", involves either increasing or decreasing the tension of the small muscles on the surface of the eye. These muscles move the eye in all directions. This type of surgery is typically performed in a hospital outpatient surgical facility. During the surgery the eye is never removed! Rather, a small incision (approximately 1/4 inch) is made on the clear membrane covering the white part of one or both eyes. Through this incision, the appropriate surgery is then performed on the surface of the eye to eliminate the strabismus. The inside of the eyeball is not entered during this type of surgery. Contemporary strabismus surgical techniques involve "hidden" incisions where there is no visible scarring of the eye surface as a result of this surgery.

In adjustable suture surgery, the surgery is performed under general anesthesia in the typical fashion except that temporary suture knots are placed. Several hours after awakening from anesthesia, the eye alignment is evaluated. If it is good, permanent knots are tied. If the eyes are not adequately aligned, an adjustment in the muscle tension can be performed. These final steps are completed with the patient awake and the surface of the eye anesthetized with eye drops. When appropriate, this technique can enhance the surgical outcome."

It's the description of that post-surgical "adjustment" that gives me the heebie-jeebies! I can't help but picture the doc pulling on the string that'll be hanging from my eye and my eyeball moving around like a marionette. Yuck! Hopefully I'll still be pretty well doped up when he has that fun...

I did see another specialist last week for a second opinion and she concurred with my doctor's assessment that I'm a good candidate for surgery, so I really have no reason (other than irrational fear) not to do this. Insurance will even cover 90% of the cost ($5000 per eye)! But please excuse me if I seem preoccupied; I'll try not to dwell!

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Anonymous said...

The whole idea of eye surgery gives me the heebie-jeebies! I can't even put eye drops in my eyes much less contact lenses. I couldn't even stand to read the descrptpion of your eye surgery. I already have the beginnings of cateracts and they will have to knock me out completely when they perform that surgery.

blackcrag said...

I have thought about laser eye surgery before, but the whole 'peeling the membrane back' thing creeps me out.

I'll keep you in my thoughts for the next few days, till it's over.

Blog Antagonist said...

I was a wreck before my Lasik surgery. I'm quite surgery phobic and yes, eyes are just so vulnerable. The combination made me really just scared to death.

But I did it, and it wasn't that bad. Eyes heal really, really quickly. I could actually feel them slicing through my cornea, (not pain, just the sensation of separation) and then I could see them lifting the flap. After the laser was done, I could see them putting the flap back and smoothing it down with a surgical sponge.

I thought I would be freaked out by having the retractor placed in my eye, but that really wasn't bad either.

All in all, my imagination was WAY worse than the actual procedure.

My sister had strabismus surgery when she was a child and now sees very well.

Best of luck. I don't blame you for being scared, but it will be okay!

I want abdominoplasty for my 40th bday. I had a huge baby and my stomach is shot. Now THAT scares me.

Rositta said...

I'll be thinking of you too, I am developing a cataract that will have to be dealt with too and I'm already scared. I lived through that with my Mom. I'm certain you will be fine...ciao

Anonymous said...

Carol, I think I've had this surgery! As a little one, of course. You'll do fine. Just don't think about the details and know how much better you'll be after. Just think - we can compare scars.

Goofball said...

it's normal to be is scary even though it's a very routine procedure etc etc...

Take care!!

Princess Cat's Pajamas said...

Oh my goodness! You are very brave. I don't think I could let anybody do that to me.

That being said, I'm sure you'll be fine. Take care!

Jen said...

Remember how great you'll feel after this is all over! And ONE pair of glasses (or none?) Wooooohoooo!

jen said...

those eye drops they use to numb your eyeball really, really work. don't worry about that part.

I understand your fear. its elective, sort of, but the good part is you'll be asleep for the really scary stuff.

there is no peeling back here, right? the peel back is squimish, but I didn't feel it or see it. my sight was too bad to begin with.

anyway, i'm thinking about you too and sending whit light of health. is that too cornea-y?

now, that tummy tuck. come september i'm having that and a boob job (just a lift, no implants) so We'll have to talk about that!

good luck, sweet lady.

Anonymous said...

So, how was it?
Would you be willing to divulge where you had your eye surgery done and if you were happy with it? I too am looking at (staring, more like) eye muscle surgery. Long story but I too am "defiantly menopausal" and would love to hear how everything went for you (post-Microsoftal, too).
take care,

Carol said...

It went great, Denise! Wish I'd had it done years ago. E-mail me and I'll give you all the information!

And hey, it removed that pesky rose color I used to see while on campus too! (Tee-hee!)


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