By Margaret Sheard …..

Many hours, 7 days a week, working on my computer has taken a bit of a toll on my eyesight and so I thought maybe new spectacles were the answer.   I had been recommended by a friend to go to the Cyprus Eye Clinic in Girne for an eye test so an appointment was made and I went along on Thursday 11th May for a check-up.

The Ophthalmologist – Dr Hatice Arodezli Soydemir, was very thorough in her check of my eyes and it resulted in discovering cataracts in both eyes which would need surgery, oh dear.  I have always had a dread of anything to do with the eyes, but Hatice said most people have this reaction, the surgery would be painless and I would be very pleased with the results.

I was asked to have a medical check up and the Eye Clinic made an appointment for me the same day at the Özel Hospital, which is nearby, to have blood pressure, heart check and blood test at 2pm, which was all carried out with no problem or delays and the results were then given to me and taken back to the Eye Clinic.  All of this was achieved less than 4 hours, brilliant.

We are very fortunate in the TRNC that we do not have to wait indefinitely to have any medical requirements dealt with, and an appointment was made for surgery on one eye on Monday 15th May.   Not something I was looking forward to but it needed to be done.

On Monday 15th May, with some trepidation, I arrived at the Eye Clinic……… I need not have worried as everything went very smoothly.  Starting with an eye check, eye drops, and something to calm me down, there was no injection just a very small item inserted beneath the eyelid to deaden the area, a short wait and then down to the eye hospital which is beneath the building.  A very impressive facility, which was absolutely pristine with very modern equipment. Hatice performed the operation and in attendance was her nurse Madde Hunter, a gentleman who monitored my blood pressure and heart rate and a young lady who acts as receptionist at the clinic and also assists during operations. A few times Madde shouted to me to breathe deeply and I realised I was holding my breath.  I could not fault the way in which this eye procedure was conducted, it was totally painless and took about 20 minutes to complete the operation.

The following day I returned to the Eye Clinic and Hatice again checked my eye and she said the results were very good.  I was then given a prescription to obtain drops from a Pharmacy, together with an information sheet showing the frequency of the eye drops and do’s and don’ts.  One of the don’ts was not to wash my hair for 5 days to avoid getting water in the eye and also to be careful when having a bath, but as I only have showers this again was another obstacle I had to overcome.   I hadn’t realised how much was involved in having eye surgery but of course it is all sensible precautions to avoid infection etc. and there is always a way of getting by with a change of how things are normally done.

The most irritating part for me following the surgery was that drops have to be inserted into my eye every 2 hours followed by another 5 minutes later, and another 3 times a day.  This was for 5 days following which I made another visit to the Eye Clinic to see how things were progressing and again another check the following week.   I know it has to be done but the eye drops procedure is a very time consuming part of the treatment and as all was well, after one week the frequency was reduced to only 5 times a day for 2 of the eye drops plus the 3 times daily drops,  and this will reduce again soon.  We made up a little day by day chart, set the phone alarm each time and have got into a pretty successful routine. So it was not such an issue after all!

Already I am aware of an improvement but I will have to go through the procedure with the other eye again shortly but now I know what happens it will be a lot easier and I am looking forward to having much better vision in the future.

When all is done and dusted then I will need to be checked for prescription spectacles, which hopefully will only be for reading but after the first 3 days, and now in less than 2 weeks, with one eye operated on, there is already a marked improvement in my vision.

Thank you Hatice and your staff.  I am sure most people would feel as I did about having eye surgery but I can confirm that I was really looked after well and Hatice and her staff reduced any stress level I may have had with their very calm and professional approach.