Sometimes I wish Roi and his Healing ability were real, rather than a creation of my mind. Still, ordinary doctors can do quite a lot.
This week, it was complications of cataract surgery. I had the lens replaced in my left eye over a year ago, with stunning results. A few days after the surgery, distant vision in my left eye was back very close to 20/20, though I still needed glasses to read. I’m getting to the point where my arms just aren’t long enough, but my overall vision was wonderful.
Then, so slowly that I was hardly aware of it, my vision began to fog up again.
I found it harder and harder to read. First, words on paper. I had to use a magnifying glass to read the phone book, but then ordinary type in books became more and more difficult. The computer screen was still readable, but more and more often I was having to zoom the text and set things I was writing to half again normal size. When I started having problems reading my insulin pump and glucose meter, I spoke to my eye doctor.
I’ve had problems with diabetic retinopathy for almost twenty years. The treatment for that is what is called pan-retinal coagulation. The outer part of the retina is killed with pinpoint burns from a laser. Effectively, the periphery of the retina—which gives peripheral vision and low-light vision—is sacrificed to save the inner part, which gives sharp focus and color vision. I’ve had lots of experience with that kind of laser treatment. It’s somewhat painful and vision afterward is blurry and pink-tinged for a while. (The laser is green.)
What I had now was posterior capsule opacity. The eye doctor explained that the laser was less intense than what I was used to, though from my point of view the procedure was much the same—eye dilated, a lens inserted in my eye, and several minutes of holding my head motionless against a frame while I fixed the gaze of my other eye on a small target light.
I could hear the clicks as the doctor used the laser to cut a small hole in the thickened capsule, but I could not feel it. After I was released from the chair, my vision was blurry and pink-tinged, as I expected. What I did not expect was that by the time I got home, about an hour later, I was able to see much better than I could only that morning.
Today, forty hours after surgery, my vision is bright and clear, and if I understand correctly what the surgery did, it should stay that way. Yes, the Healing ability of a few of my characters would be nice—but medicine today can do some wonderful things—if you can afford it.