Last week I got on public transportation. Someone slipped me some drugs, burned my eyeball, and took my money.
Okay, I had vision correction surgery. I can’t do Lasik, where they cut and pull back a flap from the cornea, burn away tissue with a laser, and put the flap back down, leading to a quick and easy recovery. No, not Lasik because years ago, in the medieval era before laser eye surgery, I had radial keratotomy (RK), in which the doctor cuts slits in your eyes with a scapel. The problem with RK is that the results aren’t stable over time. Another problem is that you shouldn’t do Lasik later, because the flap could catch and tear on the scar tissue.
Instead, I had photorefractive keratectomy (PRK). Rather than cutting a flap, the doctor scrapes off the top cells of your eyeball and then burns the exposed surface. In some ways this is safer than Lasik because there’s no flap to cause complications. The recovery period, though, is longer and much more painful — especially if you have old RK scars on the eye to begin with.
This means you generally have one eye done at a time; otherwise you’d be blind for the week or more it take your eye’s post-op inflammation to subside. I had my right eye burned on Oct 1, and my left on Nov 19. (And on Oct 26 I started that new job, so it’s been one crazy autumn).
Someone posted a video of their PRK surgery on youtube. The procedure is actually very easy to sit through. The valium helps.
By the way, Dr. Robert Maloney did my surgery. His website has video testimonials from patients, and just before my second surgery I saw one with a man nonchalantly mentioning his male partner. I thanked Dr. Maloney for that and told him that it matters.
And in case you’re wondering, I took public transportation because Will had a midday commitment I didn’t want him to cancel. But he was there to pick me up afterward, drive me home, and baby me. Which in part meant doing all the laundry I’d been saving for two weeks in the knowledge that Will had promised to be there and take care of everything I needed that weekend (kidding, Will, kidding!).