Back in June 2017, Ann Idrissi, 61, decided it was time for her to go ahead with cataract surgery.

 

Background

As well as having poor eyesight, Ann also had cataracts. “They were at the early stages, yet for eight years there was only a tiny spot in my left eye where I could see reasonably clearly out of, and even then, only with lots of constant fast blinking. It was driving me mad!”

“I’d needed corrective lenses from the age of five. I’d hated every aspect and every second of wearing glasses and I felt I’d come to the end of the line with contact lenses. My prescription meant I had to have hard lenses and after 36 years I could no longer tolerate them.”

Many of the solutions Ann needed to use on the lenses irritated her eyes and she had a particularly nasty eye infection which she was told had been caused by the edges of her hard lens cutting into her eye. “I eventually decided that persisting with contact lenses was not good for my eyes and that it was time to give them a rest.”

Before my surgery, I was short-sighted with astigmatism. I’d heard several professionals describe my prescription as the worst they’ve ever seen. I was told the same in Moorfields. The only contact lenses I could be prescribed were hard lenses which I tolerated only because I hated glasses so much but needed to be able to see.

More recently, Ann was unwell for some time following a hip replacement op that hadn’t gone well and caused her a lot of pain for almost two years. After fighting her way back to glowing health, she knew she wanted to explore the possibility of having eye surgery. Ann said “I wanted to be ‘the best me I could be’ in as many ways as possible and enjoy my life to the fullest extent. Being able to see well was always at the top of my wish-list. I’d previously been told, several times, that because of my prescription, I was unsuitable for laser surgery. So by the time my vision was further blighted by cataracts, I’d hoped that science and surgery would have advanced enough to be able to help me see better!”

Why I chose Allon Barsam

Ann explains why she chose Allon Barsam as her eye surgeon. “Eyes are so very precious and I was looking for the person I would be willing to trust with mine. Allon’s biography read extremely well and it was clear he certainly had the skill and expertise to do wonderful work, achieving excellent results. I could see and sense that he was meticulous, precise, focused and diligent, with the drive, desire and utmost capability of achieving the very best results for his patients. I felt that he sincerely wanted to do so, knowing how much it would improve not only my sight, but as an added bonus, my life in general. I felt, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that Allon was the person I could trust with my eyes.”

My cataract surgery experience with Allon Barsam

Before Surgery

At my initial appointment, I had my eyes tested, examined, measured and inspected more thoroughly than I’d ever experienced before. Surprisingly none of this took long as there was no waiting time prior to being seen and no waiting time between tests and examinations. Nothing was rushed and I felt quite relaxed throughout as everyone was professional, friendly, efficient and helpful.

I’d spoken to Allon’s secretary a few times and she was very helpful and polite at all times.

On the day

I was really looking forward to the surgery and was so hopeful of a positive outcome that I hadn’t felt nervous at all. But, just moments before surgery began, I realised I hadn’t asked if I’d feel anything, such as pressure on my eyes which did make me wonder if I’d have any discomfort. Allon told me I wouldn’t feel a thing and I didn’t! When I lay down on the table for surgery, I felt very, very relaxed immediately.

After Surgery

I am delighted to say that my cataract surgery went very well indeed. Allon very thoughtfully called me the day after surgery to check how I was and I was happy to report I was very well and that my eyes felt fine. I did have a very slight blurring of vision for a day, but even with that I could still see better than I had been able to before the surgery.

On my follow-up appointment and sight test two weeks after surgery Allon told me that I now have better than 20/20 vision for distance and reading, without the need for glasses. My husband thinks I have x-ray eyes!

How cataract surgery has changed my life

The cataract surgery has completely changed my life for the better. Everything seems so easy now that I’m not constantly struggling to see. My eyes actually feel as if they are more open now and I don’t have eye-strain headaches. The day after surgery I was sewing and threaded the tiniest of needles at first attempt. I can see pins and small earrings immediately if I drop them whereas before I’d needed help to find them. I can read the dot matrix boards on the underground and the maps on the trains, which is wonderful. I can now see friends from some distance away rather than short-sightedly walking past them in the street.

Being able to clearly see the keyboard on my laptop is a delight. No more hitting the airplane mode key when I meant to increase the sound!

There are no blind spots when driving and I feel I have almost wraparound views of everything.

I’m thinking of taking up ice-skating again because I’d like to know what skating will feel like now that I can see where I’m going. There is an endless list!

I would most definitely 100% recommend Allon Barsam as a cataract surgeon. What he achieved for me exceeded my greatest expectations. I am so delighted with my vision that it’s as if a whole new part of me has just hatched!

I see so many things now that I have never seen before, even before the cataracts and sometimes feel like the child who’s just become part of the 3D film. I can see the radiance and translucence of things when before I couldn’t. Humans look healthier to me now that I can see their complexions glowing and I can see some beautiful shades of colours that are completely new to me.

Every day something new catches my eye and I will never stop enjoying the experience.