Latest lens treatment enables torquay man to set sail

A Devon man’s vision has been transformed following eye surgery with latest lenses available, enabling him to focus, unaided, at all distances for the first time in 15 years.

‘Extended Depth of Focus’ (EDOF) lenses are an advanced lens which provide good unaided vision at distance and mid-range with patients counselled that they may need glasses for very fine tasks close up.

For Andrew Waterman, aged 57, this lens procedure has opened up the opportunity of starting a sport he has always wanted to try – sailing – but was prevented due to needing his glasses.

Andrew, a keep fit enthusiast, enjoys golf, long distance cycling and walking as well as travel, movies and reading.

But for all of these, he was dependent on strong spectacles.  He says he had: “pretty blurred vision all round. I could not really see anything medium to long distance without blur, which meant I needed quite strong varifocals all the time.  I have depended on glasses for over 15 years, and would say my sight has got worse over that time.”

A key prompt for Andrew to have eye surgery at this stage, was his determination to try sailing.

He says: “I love to spend time outdoors and try lots of activities. I want to go skiing and I really want to try sailing, but did not feel this was something I could do in glasses. As soon as I get wet, I would not be able to see through my glasses – so they are very prohibitive in some environments.  Also if there was rough weather and I lost my glasses I could not read the charts, or do any serious sailing.  Getting wet or steamed up in glasses at sea is not good!”

Andrew was treated at specialist Optegra Eye Hospital Central London with eye surgeon Mr Amir Hamid.  Mr Hamid explains: “Many patients have a lens exchange procedure, which is a sophisticated version of cataract surgery, where the patient has a tailor-made lens to suit their visual requirements. However, for patients like Andrew where his vision was compromised at all levels – close up, middle and long distance – this can be more complicated to treat. 

“The more recent lenses, EDOF, allow us – for the first time – to treat these varying distances, and so Andrew can now enjoy clear vision at all levels, just needing reading glasses for very small print. In addition, these lenses provide very good quality night vision, which was not case with earlier lenses.”

Andrew, inspired by his new vision, is hoping to buy a sailing boat in the coming months. He says: “I was fed up with glasses to say the least. So this is fantastic; having gone from basically being unable to operate without them, I now have such freedom of not needing glasses, and can’t wait to start sailing!”

Andrew is a human resources manager and married with three stepchildren.

Optegra Eye Health Care, whose hospitals include Hampshire and Central London, is a specialist provider of ophthalmic services in the UK, Czech Republic and Poland. It operates 21 eye hospitals and clinics, bringing together leading edge research, medical expertise and state-of-the-art surgical equipment.  Its top ophthalmic surgeons are renowned for their areas of expertise, offering excellent clinical outcomes.

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