Helpful comments about trips to the optician

Brandy is a member of the Birdshot Uveitis Society as well as  the birdshot forum on Lefora.  She posted this on Lefora and kindly agreed for us to post it here.  I think this is very useful information if your sight has been badly affected by birdshot.  Most of us would never think to go to this length – but it makes makes perfect sense to me.



Several months ago I had successful cataract surgery. My right eye has no center vision and so so outer vision. The left was 20/70 before the cataract, which developed very quickly because of an adverse drug reaction took me to 20/200 in 10 days.

I was referred to a low vision specialist after, for the best possible script to maximize what vision I have. They are very expensive, the refraction, which is never covered by insurance, was $150.00 alone. But it was worth every penny!

The secret to him writing me the best scripts I’ve had is simple! Before the appointment I had to have a phone consult with him. Most of the conversation centered on explaining to me what he needed me to do before the appointment. Anyone can do this and bring the info to their regular optometrist at a fraction of the cost!

Before this appointment I already had 4 pairs of glasses, because I can’t wear trifocals. I have bifocal computer glasses (2 pairs home/office), just reading, and bifocal seeing/driving glasses.

What he needed me to do is decide what I needed to see well at work, at home and so on and measure. At work I needed to measure from my eyes to the computer screen center, and to the paperwork I read off of to data entry, 2 measurements from where I sit most comfortable. Additionally to bring paperwork samples of what I data enter, especially whatever paperwork is the hardest for me to read. When he did my eye exam for the computer glasses he used a tape measure to mark out the distance to find the best possible script for those distances. He used an adjustable music stand to place my paperwork so I could read off of as he “tortured” me with is this lens better or this one.

Same thing for my home and work desk for reading glasses, I measured from where I am most comfortable sitting to my reading. He again marked it out with a tape measure and used the stand to place my book to read.

My seeing/driving glasses are simply the best possible distance he could find with the bifocals measured so I could read the dashboard, radio and the other settings.

In addition he actually took the time needed to see what he could do for the eye with no center vision and limited outer vision. No one had tried to make a script for it since there really is not much to work with, once they looked in the eye and saw the size of the scar. Well it turns out there is much more useable sight then I could believe in that eye when it has the correct script. I used to have double vision with close work, so I wore an eye patch a lot at work, which I really hated. He eliminated that and the headaches I would have at the end of every work day.

So the point of this is we can all get better scripts by going to the optometrist armed with your measurements and reading examples, especially for work where you spend 8 hours a day. When I did the desk measurements for work and home, I realized with a few changes I could make both the same distances, what an amazing difference it made. Everything was so much easier, less stressful visually for me.


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