Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Cataracts, Not Part II

We had Dad's other eye scheduled for cataract surgery this week.  That makes it sound like we could just pop the eyeball out, send it in for refitting, and then pop it right back in.  Wouldn't that be nice!  But no, his whole body was required at the cataract surgery.  Too bad.

At any rate, the second surgery hasn't happened yet.  That left eye just is not seeing well enough and we don't want to take out the good eye.  I mean, not take out.  Just put it out of commission for a while.  It would be nice to be able to see out of the left eye before they operate on the right eye.  The left eye is improving, but more slowly than they wanted it too.  Right now, with best correction, he can see 20/1000 out of it.  And that is an improvement!  So we'll just wait and see.

I'm hoping all these procedures help with his... seeing things that aren't there.  I don't know whether it is the Parkinson's (hallucinations are not uncommon) or his vision, but I'm guessing it is a combination of bad vision and his poor brain trying to make sense of it.  He sees "curtains" or "strings of dust" all over, but particularly in his bedroom.  Sometimes big strands follow him out, evidently.  Sometimes they are gauzy and thick around the windows.  Other times they are thin cobwebby strands over his train set in the garage.  Sometimes they are sparkly and glittery, and he says they can be very pretty.  He says that when they build up it is hard for him to breathe, so he has to leave his bedroom door open all the time.  He brought me his magnifying glass the other day so I could look at the dirt under his fingernails because that is what it looks like.   He's pretty frustrated with me that I can't see it and feels like I don't believe him.

I'm guessing that the left eye, the one that can't see well, is still sending occasional shots of light and he can't make sense of those sparkles.  Also, it may be like looking through smeary glasses where you see halos around lights or shoots of light coming from the windows.  Strands of dust, as it were.  His brain connections might not be able to make sense of it and interprets it incorrectly.  Or it's a combo of that and Parkinson's.  We shall see if it gets less "dusty" for him when his eyes are working properly.

I spent a few hours deep-cleaning his room the other day to get rid of all the "dust."  I cleaned his bathroom with a toothbrush (and had problems with chemical fumes for several days afterward), dusted everything, wiped the baseboards, cleaned the ceiling fans, moved everything and vacuumed thoroughly .I got out the air purifier to clean the air and sprayed air freshener.  After I was all done, he sat back and said, "There.  Now do you see them around the door there?  It is really thick with dust all the way around it."  Can't win there.  All I can say for the cleaning is that I'll need to do it more often (he has been insisting that he could do it himself) because it was nasty.

Maybe when I'm an old lady, my world will be beautiful with sheets of light and sparkles.  Or maybe my eyesight will be bad enough that I won't be able to see the real dust that is there so I won't have to clean.  Either way, it's a win!

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