I had an eye exam this past March. To my surprise I was told I had cataracts and given a referral card to a place in town that does that surgery. It was for an evaluation, supposedly. The first thing I did was call my Medicare provider to see if this surgery was even covered. It is, but of course they only pay a portion – no surprise there.
At the time of my original eye appointment I had a lot going on with my eyes. Besides not being able to see out of my trifocal glasses anymore, I have extreme dry eye, macular degeneration, and as if that wasn’t enough, a sty on my right eye! Good grief! I was flabbergasted.
The good news is the MD hasn’t gotten worse since my last visit, thank goodness. I guess taking all my eye vitamins and cooking all my greens stinking up the house (my husband’s words) has paid off.
I didn’t want to go to the cataract doctor until the sty was gone, which took six weeks! It has to run its course, the doctor said. And then if it didn’t move to my left eye. I was fed up at that point so I went to the herb store and got a homeopathic drop for sties. I was very impressed with it. The second sty was gone in two weeks.
Richens Eye Center - my place of choice
My appointment was June first. They gave me an entire eye exam all over again. The doctor told me I had cataracts in both eyes. Oh my! Maybe that’s why I feel half-blind, along with the constant watering. So what do they do, refer me to more eye drops! I think I’ve tried every drop made at this point, even prescription ones. Heck, what’s two more weeks of suffering with this dry eye business. It’s already been four years. I can do two more weeks surely, I told myself. So I was a good girl and went and got more eye drops after I left the office. He had dilated my eyes, but I had those heavy wrap-around shades to wear under my glasses. I would be fine, right?
The wrap around shades some of you might be familiar with
You guessed it, my next appointment is in two weeks (and another co-pay) to go in and have my eyes measured for the lenses, and to discuss pricing with the counselor. Lord this must be expensive if you need a counselor for that. The doctor already scared me to death with all the bad things that can happen, but usually doesn’t. Hmmm…Now the counselors will scare me with the prices, I guess. The receptionist already told me they have financing. Hint, hint.
Then it will be yet another appointment for the actual surgery, for one eye and the other about three weeks later.
So I’ve picked the brains of some people at work who had the surgery done. The laser cost about $2100 more than the knife. So what it boils down to is how long I want to pay for this cataract surgery. The guy at work told me he had the knife and was doing fine. He was only out of pocket about $1800. What? That’s a lot of money. So depending on the lenses I select, I’m looking at $4,000 if I go with laser. Good heavens! I hope they have smelling salts to bring me around when they knock me over with the prices. My sister says I definitely want the laser because you heal quicker and can see better faster. She knows a few people who’ve had this done. I guess I need to do more research before my next appointment on the fifteenth when I probably have to sign on the dotted line.
Getting older is expensive.
Do any of you have experience with this?