Sunday, March 21, 2010

Being glad for science

I know I certainly am. One of the things I am extremely grateful for is the science and study of the human eye. You remember the human eye. Charles Darwin used it as a possible example of falsifiability of the theory of Natural Selection. Of course in Darwin's day the eye wasn't much more understood than a blob of protoplasm. OK, I know I am understating the state of knowledge in the mid 1800's, but not by that much. Compared to today it might as well have been understood to so little a degree.

Of course some anti-evolutionists like to point to the human eye and claim it is an example of something science will never truly understand. How wrong they are. Things have certainly changed in a pretty short time. Advanced in our knowledge of the eye, light amplification, physics . . to name a few . . . have done some incredible work at restoring and improving peoples vision.

But thanks to science and even the understanding of how the eye developed and works -- next month I get the have my eyes fixed. Apparently I have cataracts and it's getting worse. So they are going to cut a tiny slit in my cornea, remove the lens, and replace it with a new one. Not only are they going to replace it, but they are designing a lens to fix my astigmatism. So I am getting an upgrade :-) Come a few weeks later, I might only need reading glasses rather than bifocals.

It was sort of funny. Just a few months ago I had my regular eye exam and the Doc told me I was developing cataracts. She seemed surprised because there was no sign at my previous appointment. I guess normally cataracts is something you see come on very slowly. So here we a few months later and I noticed my eyesight getting worse, but I really wasn't thinking about the cataracts. It was more like my glasses just seemed out of kilter.

No, when my Doc took the measurements and compared them to 4 months previously she did everything but say 'Holy Crap!' Apparently it's progressing pretty fast. So I switched from my vision doc to an eye doc (optometrist to an ophthalmologist) and am set up for surgery on both eyes a couple of week apart in April.

Now that I realize what the problem is I sort of want it taken care of quickly. I mean I have noticed it impacting my reading. Street signs are tough to read. I told my wife it was interfering with my girl watching, and her response back to me was "yea, and the guy with long hair you were looking at didn't seem to happy either." Just goes to show trying to a line in with my wife doesn't even work. I have changed the resolution on all my computer screens to 1024 by 768, which is really annoying. I was running 1440 by 900 on a pair of 19 inch wide-screens at home and the same on two 20 inches at the office. Its frustrating because I've lost a lot of screen real estate.

Well while I am not looking forward to the surgery . . . I mean laying there while someone with sharp things approaches your eyes, I am looking forward to 'seeing' the results. And on that I thank science, the scientists who developed these techniques, and the doctors who have learned them and perform them regularly. According to one source over 2 million of this specific surgery will be performed in the US just this year. Sure beats cataracts surgery from the 6th century BC:

" . . .describes an operation called "couching", in which a curved needle was used to push the lens into the rear of the eye and out of the field of vision. The eye would later be soaked with warm clarified butter and then bandaged. (


  1. Good luck with that. Hope it goes well for you. I had Lasik about 8 years ago and if the healing process is anything like that it won't take long at all.

  2. My mom went through the exact same thing, no problems, and her eyes are great now.

    Hope you're well Ted, long time no see!

  3. Thanks Scripto and Gumby. I've heard nothing but good about this type of surgery, so my fingers are crossed :-)

    I know I haven't been around much since September. Started on a new contract that is trying to kill me ;-)