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Thread: Lasik Surgery

  1. #1
    MembersZone Subscriber mglax13's Avatar
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    Default Lasik Surgery

    I am a volunteer FF and there are no vision requirements in my department so I get by wearing contacts and glasses. I've noticed an increasing amount of advertising in many fire periodicals in my area about fire fighter discounts for lasik surgery. I began to think that it would be convenient to just wake up at 3 am and not have to put on my glasses, then take them off to mask up at a fire and walk around partially blind. Now my question, how many of you on the board have had this surgery done? How do you like it now? How long ago did you have it done? Roughly how much did you pay? I have about 4 or 5 guys in my dept. that have done it, all with good results, I was just curious if this is a popular thing lately in the fire world.
    MFD Truck 2
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  2. #2
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    Do a search for Lasik in the Firefighters Forum, it's been a popular topic and you'll get lots of good info.

    I had it done 7 months ago...Best money I ever spent
    FTM-PTB-DTRT

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    MembersZone Subscriber mcaldwell's Avatar
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    I haven't done it personally (no need), but one of our senior guys had it done last year, and he swears by it today. He was happy he waited until now to be sure the technology was fully developed, but he has had no regrets.

    I think he paid about $2000 CAD for the procedure.
    Never argue with an Idiot. They drag you down to their level, and then beat you with experience!

    IACOJ

  4. #4
    Forum Member nmfire's Avatar
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    I'm lazy so I will just copy/paste what I wrote in the glasses thread.

    I had been stuck wearing glasses since I was in fourth grade. For 14 years, I have had to have those stupid things stuck to my head. They fall off. The screws come apart. They fog up when you get out of a car. They fog up when you put safety goggles on (like for extrications). And I had to take them off for SCBA meaning i am blind. My vision was about 20/600. You know that giant E on the eye chart? It was just a black blur.

    Back in March, I had laser vision correction. I can not begin to describe the difference. My vision is now 20/15. No problems day or night. Nothing to fog up. Nothing to break. Nothing to get in the way. AND I CAN SEE WITH AN SCBA MASK ON. I can wear normal sunglasses. I can fall asleep watching TV and not worry about rolling over and breaking them. I can see the alarm clock in the morning (wait, I don't want to see that...). It is like a whole new world. I can't remember life before glasses because I had them so long. Hell, I didn't even know what I looked like without glasses because if I took them off to look in a mirror, I couldn't see anything.

    I highly recomend anyone who wants to see again, do yourself a favor and at least look into it. It is the best thing I have done in a long time.

    I should add what kind of effects I had during/after. My eyes have always been hypersensitive to ANYTHING going near them, even my own hands. This is why I could never have contacts. I am really bad, I go nuts when anything is near my eyes. My regular optomitrist hates me.

    The numbing drops they put in your eyes for the surgery helps A LOT. But that thing they clamp on your head sure is wierd. It doesn't hurt. But it isn't soothing either. Well worth the 15 mintues of slight discomfort though. It was kinda cool, after the laser is done and they are smoothing over the conea flap, your eyes are flooded with water as they smooth it out with this q-tip looking thing. It is actually touching your eyeball. You can see it. You know it is there. Any other time, you would be fighting like hell. But you don't feel a thing. It is just neat.

    I had the procedure at 4pm. My vision was blury and sensitive to light for the rest of the night. The irritation and "forign body sensation" was gone by 9pm. When I woke up the next morning, it was clear as day and NO irritation. No halos or flashing. No night vision problems. Nothing. Day after checkup at 10am was 20/15. 2 weeks later, it was still 20/15. One month later it was STILL 20/15. It has been amost a year now and it is still perfect. I have NO side effect at all. I just can't rave about it enough. People who have never needed glasses just can't know the feeling of being able to see again.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    I had the surgury done about 18 months ago, and immediatly wondered why I waited so long.

    I have worn glasses since I was in the first grade and contacts since I was 13 (I'm 35 now). My vision was similar to nmfire, about 20/800. After a certain point it doesn't matter any more. I had good luck with contacts, and was able to swim, water ski and do pretty much everything in contacts, but getting up in the middle of the night for a fire was difficult, messing with glasses ect. I was also to the point that the docters could not correct my left eye better than 20/40 with contacts.

    Since the surgury, I can see at least 20/30 in each eye, and have had no side effects. I saw halo's around lights for about a month, but it's not a problem now. I would recommend the surgury to anybody.

    I paid about $3500 (US) to have it done. The one suggestion I would make is not to shop for bargans. Especially if your eyes are really bad, find out how many operations the doctor has performed and the success rate is with patients similar to you.

  6. #6
    Forum Member nmfire's Avatar
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    Something else I learned this summer while I was on vacation. I can see underwater. It took me a while to garner up the bravery to open my eyes. I wanted to but you know what it's like when something is just stopping you from doing it? In the 14 years I had glasses, I never opened my eyes underwater, partly because of the hypersensitivity making me scared to do it, and partly because I knew I wouldn't be able to see jack anyway. After 1/2 an hour of mumbling to myself about it, I finally dunked my head and opened my eyes. HOLY SHIZZLE! Again, people who have good vision to begin with just can't comprehend what it is like!
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

  7. #7
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    Default contacts

    Here is a question for you all.

    I am wearing contacts now, after wearing glasses since about 7 years old. I got the nerve up to get them. I haven't had any trouble while in a SCBA with them dring up or anything. But I don't have to type you can sleep in. How many of you have tried them and did they work well. If I can get the money and the nerve I will go for the laser vision.
    Thanks
    DM
    ___________
    "I am telling the truth, I was driving through the warehouse and the wall jumped in front of my fork lift. I honked the horn and it never listened."

  8. #8
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    Smile

    I have done some research here on the procedure. I have worn contacts for many,(many..) years, and hate putting on my glasses ( yes it's a vanity thing, girl thing, what ever..)plus, my contacts cause my eyes to dry really bad when I sleep with them on here at the station, but I have found a place in Spokane-not far from where I'm at, that not only can do lasik surgery, but they will put all your cost into one price. That cost covers your pre-consultation, the procedure and all follow up visits, as well ( and this is the best part)any touch ups over the next-how many ever years. Ofcourse, that doesn't cover things like macular degeneration, accidents that result in vision loss (some or all)cataract's or glaucoma. Any of those things that are almost unavoidable with old age aren't covered. However, for the here and now, and many years to come (hopefully) it's all in one price. Plus, this doctor gives a 20% off discount to all fire, EMS, and law enforcement personal. ( That comes to a little over $1800.00 for those of you who are curious) One of our captains had it done at this doctor, and he's had great results for about 6 mos. now!
    So now I look forward to singing one song in my spare time, I believe it goes something like...
    "I can see clearly now the rain is gone! I can see all obstacles in my way....."

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    I understand LASIK is a valid covered expense for pre-tax
    Flexible Spending Account programs.
    "I am permaprobie, and I approve this message."

  10. #10
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    I can't speak for lasik but I do know the results of eye surgery. Our health insurance covers R/K (the knife), but not laser surgery. I used contacts mostly, the kind you can sleep in. Most of the time they were no problem but they did tend to dry up and even pop out sometimes. I am very happy with my eye surgery. There was little or no pain and I had 20/20 vision the next day. I did see halos at night for a little while but that cleared up and I have no problems now. It's been 5-6 years since my surgery.

  11. #11
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    Iím 28 and have been in glasses since I was 12. I had the surgery in Nov. and now I have 20/10 vision with no problems. Total cost was $2,200. Without a doubt it was the best thing I have every done!!

  12. #12
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    Originally posted by permaprobie
    I understand LASIK is a valid covered expense for pre-tax
    Flexible Spending Account programs.
    I believe it is....Paging Weruj1....isn't this how you paid for yours?
    FTM-PTB-DTRT

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