Staring Into a Laser Beam
The Left Eye - 60 days later
--Scott Rainey
The Left Eye
I delayed the second surgery which is normally done at a 30 day interval to about 60 days. At 30 days I realized that my first zapped eye wasn't seeing as clearly as the unzapped eye was with my one-lens glasses. Some people I've talked to get the second eye zapped within a week, but each person's needs are different.

At 1:30 PM on Thursday July 17, 1997, I walked in to get my left eye lasered.

I was cheerful and ready, and all of the staff members were cheerful and happy to see me. Dr. Rich was in an even more upbeat mood than the first time. We spoke of experiences and expectations. They measured the acuity of my corrected eye, and Dr Rich made some adjustments in the program to bring the Left eye even closer to perfect than the right eye is expected to go.

I drove myself home, which is supposedly against the rules, but it was a short drive in familiar territory.

By 4 PM it was apparent that something was wrong. I was in agonizing pain in my newly operated eye. I called, they said come right in, and two drops of the pain meds was all it took to make me a happy camper. Amazing.

As I was alone, I could think of no option but to drive myself, and that worked out just fine. I drove myself home as well, but slowly. OK, I should have called a taxicab; but I tell this tale of my own foolishness to give you context of how minor all of this outpatient surgery is.

That night I again dislodged the bandage contact lens. Again I was in agony and as I was sleeping alone had to deal with the problem. I had a supply of the wimpy anesthetic drops which I used for wetting solution and put the contact lens back in my eye. It took forever for the pain to pass... ok about 60 seconds and then everything was fine again and I got a good nights sleep.

At the 24 hour post op, I made the mistake of politely saying "I am experiencing substantial discomfort now." The technician puttered about doing this and that for nearly a minute before I discovered the code words which brought immediate action, and relief.

I don't recall my words exactly but if this happens to you, I recommend loudly exclaiming: "Hey $%*@&, I'm in a lot of #$@^ing Pain here!! Give me something for it now!!


"Thank you."

The eyedrops they have on hand at the clinics are absolutely magical. In seconds I was indeed feeling no pain, despite my newly hightened awareness that the most sensitive part of my body had been ripped up more than a little.

I've had friends report zero discomfort, so your experience may vary, but I recommend telling the clinic staff that you're really intolerant of pain. The pain meds are probably expensive but that extra drop or two won't break their bank. Take them, there's no down side from too much; and a lot of discomfort.... er... PAIN at the other end from too little.

Next Chapter

Home Page

A Byte of


The Right

Zap Day
1st Eye

Recovery &
First Eye

Zap Day
2nd Eye

Recovery &

Summary &

Focus problem in a
nearsighted (myopic) eye

Animated GIF of PRK process (91k)
Images from the Casey Eye Institute Website