I had PRK surgery – My Experience Part Two

Thanks for sticking with me on this journey through my PRK surgery. If you are just joining me you can read my all about surgery day and some of the heart work I have had to go through up to this point.

I wanted to use this post to try and describe the days and now few weeks after my initial surgery date. I had surgery on September 4th, 2014. As I described before it was fast and painless.  After doing a bunch of research I was concerned about how bad the recovery would be the first 4 days. I read those were the worst days and people described it as anywhere from extreme light sensitivity to burning, itching and constant watering of the eyes.

As any good office manager would do I scheduled a couple of client meetings for Dominic in Sioux Falls on the afternoon after my surgery. All work and no play apparently…so he brought me to my parent’s house so that I could relax there after the surgery was done. We had lunch and I was feeling pretty good, didn’t even need sunglasses. Everything looked hazy to me. Like I needed to blink away a covering over my eye. I have heard others describe it as having wax paper over their eyes, and that is a pretty accurate description.

I slept for awhile and then got up again and really felt good. I wasn’t having any pain at all. I am allergic to codine and typically they prescribe Tylenol 3 after PRK surgery just in case. I knew that I couldn’t take that so Tylenol/Advil were my only options. Thankfully I didn’t really even need those!

PRK 4

My poor selfie a few hours after the surgery. I look a little miserable.

I was worried about the bandage contacts getting dried out as I slept, so I did set an alarm the first few nights at 2am just so I would get up and put the rewetting eye drops in. On the 3rd night I thought I didn’t need to set the alarm and when I woke up both contacts felt like they were slipping out of place. Rewetting drops helped get everything back to normal.

My worst day was Saturday (Day 3). I had to wear sunglasses in the house in a darkened room. I spent most of the day on the couch listening to a book on tape and only got up to do my drops. A lazy day for sure. I was lucky because my mother-in-law volunteered to take the kids with her to their house for the weekend so that I could have quiet to rest and recover. This really was a blessing, so if you are considering the surgery and have kids I would recommend you ask for help for those first few days.

My vision remained cloudy for the entire weekend. It was pretty blurry as well and I wasn’t feeling confident that when I got the contacts out that I would be seeing the 20/40 required. The doctor thought that I would be driving by Monday (day 5), but when I was checked I just wasn’t there.

I was devastated.

Because my surgery experience was so good and I didn’t really experience pain I thought that the time it would take for my vision to return to normal would be fast. In my case that hasn’t happened.

I understand this is normal. My eye doctor says that the cells are healing, my eyes look good…but because I had the PRK, it can take anywhere from 2-5 weeks to get to 20/20 vision…and even then there are people that don’t achieve that until 3 months.

I knew this going in, yet I believed that this wouldn’t be my reality. So it has been a frustrating few weeks only because I had some unrealistic expectations that weren’t met.

I was checked at 1 week and still no driving. I believe at that appointment there were tears. I was NOT handling being dependent on others this much. I missed picking the kids up from school, I wanted that few 5 minutes alone on my way to the school. I wasn’t supposed to get checked again until the 1 month mark, but when things weren’t as hoped at 1 week, my eye doctor said that she would check me again in a week.

The worst part the entire first week was seeing at the computer. The white, bright background with black letters was almost impossible to read. If I were to go do it all over I would have not scheduled any clients meetings the entire week after my surgery and just taken time off. I stained to see clearly, and got headaches because I had to constantly move back and forth to try and get some clarity.

That is one reason these posts didn’t happen sooner…I couldn’t spend a single moment longer than I needed on a computer.

I do wonder if my rushing back to work slowed my healing at all…had I spent more time resting my eyes, would things have changed sooner?

I am going to end here again, and will come back tomorrow for an update on my week 2 check up and what is next!

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