Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Normal vision

I can't even begin to describe what it is like to have normal vision again. Both eyes have been corrected to 20/20. I need to wear reading glasses. But, I had to wear them before the problem started with the cataracts. After I made the roughly 4-hour drive home today after seeing Dr Z, one of the first things I did was to check all the reading glasses I already own. They all are suitable and I can read well. Basically, I am back to were I was after lasik (7 or 8 years ago) and pre-cataracts (past 9 months).

During the drive, I got to thinking about what would have been my situation many years ago before someone figured out how to remove cataracts and implant artificial lenses. I could tell that my vision was getting worse just about every week. Everything was blurry. I couldn't read street signs. I had to be within 8 inches to see my computer screen. I suppose 100's of years ago I would have just simply gone blind. Eventually, I may have just seen colors and blurry shapes. That would have sucked.

I still have a couple follow-up appointments. But, all the real work is done. I will now be able to see well when we go to Alaska!!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

right eye cataract surgery

Cataract surgery on right eye today. Seems to have gone well. A little gunky right now from all the drops and the clear plastic protective patch. But, even with all that, I can see much better. By tonight I should have good vision in both eyes.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Day before second cataract surgery

Today was a follow up with Dr Z and prep for surgery on my right eye. He is very happy with the left eye surgery. So am I. I see very well with my left eye. Dr Z did, however, say that I will need to use reading glasses - as I did pre-cataracts.

Surgery on the right eye is tomorrow morning. With the "twilight" anesthetic, I imagine I will sleep most of Tuesday as I did last week. Dr Z expects the right eye surgery to go just as well as the left eye.

If, however, I need reading glasses, I may have an issue posting here or reading/answering emails on my blackberry. I didn't think about bringing any reading glasses. We'll see.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

left eye cataract surgery follow up

Follow up with eye Dr went well. My left eye vision is corrected to 20/20!! Can't wait for surgery on the right eye next week.

Directions are that I shouldn't exert myself - just sit, watch TV, nap, don't lift anything, don't bend over, don't do anything strenuous.

I must put the patch back on to sleep so I don't rub or scratch the eye while sleeping. Two different drops four times per day. With all the sitting, I'll certainly have time to remember the drops.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

left eye surgery

Cataract surgery on my left eye is complete. After a last-minute checkup yesterday, I started eye drop,  went to the surgery center at 7:30 this morning. After check-in, I changed into one of those fashionable hospital gowns. Over a period of time, the nurse put 12 drops in m left eye - to dialate and numb the eye. When they were satisfied, I was taken to an operation room for the surgery. I was given a "twilight" drug. I wasn't really knocked out; though, I guess some people experience that effect from the drug. I was aware and conscious throughout the procedure. Lots of colors and no pain. After a few minutes, the Dr said he was done. They put a protective, clear plastic patch on my eye and wheeled me to recovery where I transferred to a lounge chair similar to the chairs used for chemo. A nurse brought me crackers a d apple juice for a snack. It didn't take long before I felt OK and we left. I have more eye drops for the rest of the day. When I took of the patch to put in drops, I could already see much better. Much brighter. I go in for a follow-up. Apparently, my vision will continue to improve over the next couple days. I will probably be able to remove to patch tomorrow.  So far, so good. Right eye next week.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

another long day

Another long day Wedn at the conference. This morning I had a big breakfast in my room to avoid the under-nurishment of yesterday. Went with MT to see Forum Shops and a new competitive property. Lots of walking. But, I handled it OK. Trade show opened at noon and I was outrageously busy all afternoon. Finally got out for 1/2 hour to get a snack. Returned to the show for a completely full schedule until 6pm - when I was scheduled to have dinner with our reps who are here. MT and I went to that dinner with the 5 reps and I headed to bed right after - already 9pm by the time I got to the room. Productive day; but way too tiring for me. I basically passed out again in my bed. Woke up in time to prepare for a breakfast meeting. Then, to a taxi for MT and me. Now, waiting for our flight.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

What a day!

Today I started my first out-of-town business trip in a very long time. Took a 4 1/2 hour flight to Vegas to attend the SPREE conference. MT, my new boss, came with me

Turned out to be a very productive day. But, I am wiped out. My feet are killing me. I walked more and stood more than I have in years. Had the chance to visit with many friends - haven't seen some of them in years. They have all been kind and supportive. Pre-diagnoses, pre-chemo and pre-radiation today would have been a blast. I am very glad I came to the conference. But, I know I will pay for it with a very worn out body.

With long flight and 3-hour time zone change, my body is out of whack and I haven't eaten as well as normal. Tomorrow I have a very full day. Visiting local properties with MT and, then, we have a full afternoon of meetings.

I miss Jill. I can't even remember the last time when she wasn't with me. But, I think it would have been even harder on her to make this trip. She will also have a rough day tomorrow - filled with more testing and seminars re: treatment. It will be a rough day for her and I will wish that I was with her to help her through it. I will be thinking of her all day.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

eye ultrasound & cataracts

Had an ultrasound on both eyes on Friday. The process was pretty quick. These measurements will be used to determine the proper artificial lens implant to use for each eye. I have a total of eight more appointments to complete the entire process. The surgery will involve making a very small incision. Then, a probe will be inserted and the doctor will use ultrasound vibration to break up my current very cloudy lens. The tiny pieces of the lens are then suctioned out. A new artificial lens implant is inserted through the same small incision and I will go through a recovery process. The doctor will do my left eye first and, one week later, he will do the right eye. It is not likely that I will be able to drive during this time; so, we will be staying with Jill's Mom in Joliet. Jill will drive until I am able to see sufficiently to drive. I can't wait for the surgery so that I can see without the fog and poor focus that I currently experience. It will be nice to really see colors again. Just nine days to go.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

still stable

Saw Dr Einhorn today. He reviewed the Xrays that were done this morning and says that I continue to be stable. No treatments. He also commented that it is now 13 months since the discovery of brain lesions; and, that none of those lesions had grown. Scheduled a 2-month follow up for mid-June. He discussed my weight loss and went through my weights when I have visited him since August. 37 lbs lost since then. I told him he should go back a few more months because that's only half of it. I have lost 74 lbs since last April. He actually seemed to be fine with it since he said that I was clearly too heavy and that might have contributed to some of my problems - like shortness of breath.

Next up, I start the cataract surgery process Friday with an ultrasound to measure for the new artificial lens size.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Good Day

Got a new blazer today. First that I have bought since losing 74 lbs. Much smaller.  Last night, I tried on every suit coat/blazer that I own. All were much too big - overlapped around 8 to 10". Thought about it on my drive downtown. Stopped by Leon Tailoring - close to downtown - before going to the office. Never been there before. Small, family-owned shop that has been open 102 years.

Turns out they had a blazer in stock and they could tailor it to me - TODAY. And, I didn't have to pay for alterations. Now I have a very nice blazer for the Alaska cruise and for the conference in a couple weeks. I've never owned one tailored this well. It's not custom-make; but, it's probably as close as I will get.

And, this is a two-fer day. I also got the written notice that our home mortgage is now fully paid off. No more home mortgage payment. Hurray!!

Jill visited the doctor who did her stem cell transplant eight years ago and has been treating her since. He told her yesterday that her amyloidosis has been stable long enough that they now have many new treatment options in the event the amyloidosis becomes active.

Nothing really new about my health. Too much good news to talk about instead.