Are there any opticians out there?

  Noels 16:16 19 Oct 08

About 6 months ago at 73 yrs of age I was diagnosed with the first stages of a cataract which makes focusing difficult in my right eye. I asked if they could prescrible glases to correct this problem. I was told no.
However I use binoculars for bird watching and I can adjust the binos for perfect vision?
So why can't the opticion adjust my glasses acordingly??

  lofty29 16:22 19 Oct 08

click here
hope this helps

  Noels 16:44 19 Oct 08

Many thanks for your input.
My question is "If I can focus with both eyes using binoculars Why can't opticians prescribe glasses to correc my vision?

  BT 17:03 19 Oct 08

Cataracts are caused by the lens of your eye starting to go cloudy so no glasses will improve this. See your doctor and get them seen to. Its a simple operation and involves the removal of the cloudy lens and an implant of a plastic lens. If you don't have them done your vision will rapidly get worse and eventually you won't be able to see at all in that eye.
Its a simple operation done as an outpatient procedure under local anasthetic and takes about 20 mins. You will be amazed just how bad your vision has become and how much better it is afterwards. I have had both of my eyes done at different times and I was home about an hour after the procedure. Don't delay you can't afford to lose your sight and its so simple to avoid it.

  laurie53 20:20 19 Oct 08

I have the start of cataracts too, but my optometrist tells me it's nothing to worry about for about twenty years.

Presumably by that time (I'll be 91!), blurred vision will be the least of my problems

  Covergirl 21:08 19 Oct 08

A second (or third) opinion may prove fruitful.

My theory :

Binocs let in a lot of light (more or less depending on the size of the object lens). From Wiki "Binoculars concentrate the light gathered by the objective into a beam".

I can't read small print under a low light but no problem in bright light or daylight, so maybe the binocs are overriding the effects of the cataract?

Opticians - Pah! Another expensive professional service some of us are unfortunate enough to have to suffer.

  Jim Thing 21:37 19 Oct 08

Just a word in support of BT, whose advice is good.

I had both eyes done a couple of years ago, one privately (because I'm an impatient old man and my eyesight had fallen below the standard required for driving) and one a few weeks later on the NHS. Both operations were done in the same theatre with the same theatre staff, and if my NHS operation had been scheduled for p.m. instead of a.m. it would have been done by the same surgeon. The only difference between the two operations was £1600.

The operation is entirely painless by the way, and it really does make a huge difference. As BT says: "Don't delay you can't afford to lose your sight and its so simple to avoid it."

  BT 08:27 20 Oct 08

Twenty years! I'd take that with a very large pinch of salt.

I had my first one done in 2001 and in 2005 my optician told me that I would probably need the other one done 'soon'. I had no real problems until about the middle of 2007 when I started noticing blurring and especially at night it was getting difficult driving. In October 2007 when I had my Diabetes eyecheck the lady doing the check referred me immediately. By the time I had it done in March 2008 I was TOTALLY blind in that eye. Believe me once they start they will eventually get to the point where they affect your life. It may be months, it may be years, but it WILL happen.

I was talking to an elderly neighbour the other day and she has been told that she has to have both of her eyes done next month. Her words to me were that she didn't even know she had Cataracts. That is the problem, they start slowly and you tend to adapt to them and don't realise how your sight is deteriorating until one day you realise that you can't see properly.

Cataract operations are the most commonly performed operations in the NHS. Here in Norfolk, the Norfolk & Norwich hospital apparently performs about 5000 procedures a year, the highest number at one hospital in the NHS.

Jim Thing
£1600, that seems quite a good price. When I was pricing it up in 2001, prices seemed much higher than that, nearer the £3000 mark around London where I lived at the time. I think the cheapest place I found was Kings Lynn.

  Stuartli 09:48 20 Oct 08

Laser eye treatment costs from around £395 upwards per eye at specialist private clinics.

Also see:

click here

  Jim Thing 10:02 20 Oct 08

Aye, £1600 was indeed a reasonable price, especially I was told by my optometrist that the Belfast surgeon who did my first eye is one of the best in the business. She said that most opthalmic surgeons charge more than £2000 for cataract removal.

On the same subject I appreciated a wise remark made by my son-in-law. I'd mentioned to him that mine was one of ten cataract operations on the surgeon's list for the same Saturday morning, and that £16,000 wasn't a bad return for a wee Saturday half-day job. "Look at it this way" he said, "if he only charged £2.50 you wouldn't want him cutting your eye open."

  Noels 10:05 20 Oct 08

And all the other helpful suggestions. I suspect you are right about the light gathering power of the binoculars. I don't have real problems on sunny days but on dull days focussing my right eye can be a real test.
I will follow this up with my optician who is married to a consultant at our local eye hospital
Many thanks to all

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