“Will there be much pain?”
In general, there is no pain following your retinal surgery. Even with the most invasive procedures, such as a scleral buckle for retinal detachment, almost all patients are comfortable with acetaminophen(e.g. Tylenol) or ibuprofen (e.g. Advil). Your doctor should be aware of any significant pain. I usually call patients that evening to check on them.
“Will I be put to sleep?”
I prefer that you do not get put to sleep, that is, most patients do not require general anesthesia. Most of my cases are short and are performed under local anesthesia with sedation. A sedative is injected through your intravenous (I.V.) to put you in a short sleep after which an injection is made around your eye to totally numb and paralyze the eye. In most cases, you will be awake, but comfortable during the operation.
“How do you put the eye back in?”
Fortunately, we do not have to remove the eye, therefore, we do not have to replace it. An eyelid speculum is utilized to keep the eyelids spread open. This is usually sufficient to expose any areas of the eye that require surgery.
“Is the retinal surgery performed as an outpatient?”
Almost all surgery is performed at the Woodburn Surgical Center on an outpatient basis.
“Does the operation need to be repeated?
At times, operations do need to be repeated
“Will I have an eye patch?”
Yes, a patch is placed on the eye at the end of the operation. The patch will be removed the next morning when you return to the office.
“Do I need to rent equipment?”
Only patients that require the placement of intraocular gas, as a part of their retinal surgery, will require certain head positions be maintained during the recovery period. Special equipment is available for rental.
“How long is recovery?”
This is a tough question. Full visual recovery may take months after retinal surgery. If specific head positioning is required, then expect 7 days of positioning. If head positioning is NOT required, then no specific physical restrictions are required. Drops will last for weeks to months. In many cases, you may return to work by the following Monday.