New eyes with Dr. Verdier III

The surgery

Note: This is the third part in the mini-series about Emma Palova’s journey from near blindness to new eyes with 20/20 vision. It is a story about cataracts that cause blurred vision.

The second part “The evaluation of cataracts” was published on Sept. 13.

The first part “Eyes set on Dr. Verdier” was published on EW Emma’s Writings on Sept. 6.

 The Verdier Eye Center performs 100 cataract surgeries a week between the five doctors and the two floor levels.

Dr. David Verdier, a recognized eye surgeon
Dr. David Verdier, a recognized eye surgeon

The surgical rooms of East Paris Surgical Center, LLC are located  in the basement of the building at 1000 E. Paris in Grand Rapids, Michigan. There were a lot of people in the waiting room. Some with eye shields awaiting the second eye surgery.

I noticed a painting on the wall of a beautiful dog on a beach. I’ve never had a surgery before, so I didn’t know what to expect.

But, I did have my patient’s handbook.

There was a trio of women loudly chatting.

“How come you put on your make-up when you’re having an eye surgery,” asked a brunette her friend. The handbook specifically instructed not to wear any make-up. Now that was something new for me too; not wearing make-up. The last time I didn’t have make-on in public was probably in sixth grade.

After eye surgery
After eye surgery

“It’s a frivolous surgery,” the woman laughed.

Any surgery is a surgery. My second biggest asset, eyes, were at stake. I was scared.

The stalls in the surgical room were again full of people, either getting prepped for the surgery or recovering.

I got a lot of eye drops that dilated and numbed the right eye. In the meantime, the anesthesia was kicking in. But, I could still hear the anesthesiologist.

“You’re the youngest person here,” he said referring to the cataract that strikes younger people.

“Yes, everything is relative,” I said.

“Well if you live long enough, everyone will eventually get one,” said the anesthesiologist donning a nice plastic cap.

They hauled me away to Dr. David Verdier’s caring hands. The actual surgery took only 15 minutes, but the prep time and recovery totaled three hours.

An incision is made into the eye and the old lens is removed and replaced with a new plastic one. I have an AcrySofIQ lens implant that also corrected my vision, so I don’t have to wear eyeglasses.

I was not completely out during the surgery. I could feel the work on the eye and see yellow circles. After the surgery I got a nutri-bar and cranberry juice. It never tasted better. The patients are required not to eat or drink anything as of midnight before the surgery.

I could immediately see clear on the right eye even through the grid of the eye shield. That was an incredible feeling after two years of blurred vision. At its worst point in mid July, I only went by memory or by touch.

“I am very pleased with how the surgery has turned out,” said Dr. Verdier right after the surgery.

I was ecstatic and went for a check-up the next day, still not being able to drive because of the previous anesthesia.

“You have a 20/20 vision now,” said Dr. Verdier. “It does matter who performs the surgery.”

“I am very grateful to you, doctor,” I said. “You made me a new woman.”

Then, Dr. Verdier explained what he was going to do with the left eye two weeks later.

“I will adjust the left eye so you can read, but you won’t able to see as clear into the distance,” he said. “The two eyes would fight.”

You could see the respect everyone at the center had for Dr. Verdier.

The left eye would be next in two weeks.

To be continued with the “Grand Finale.”

About the featured photo. This is how clearly I see now. The photo is of Fallasburg Covered Bridge by Bruce Doll.

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