Moorfields patient, William, explains the sight saving care and surgery he has received at Moorfields Eye Hospital.
"Going blind was the biggest fear of my life. One of my cousins is blind and deaf, and I can remember watching him and thinking how much he was missing out on life. It left a big impression on me and I’ve carried that fear with me.
My diagnosis came out of the blue. In 2012, I was having a routine eye check at Boots, when the optician spotted something amiss and asked me if I had a family history of glaucoma. She referred me onto Croydon Hospital, where I was put on a course of drops to control the pressure. For me, it felt like it was the end of the world.
Over the next 18 months I was on a number of different drops. The dose fluctuated and at one stage my prescription was duplicated, which had a really bad effect on me. Basically, the doctors were really struggling to manage my condition.
At a routine checkup, the doctor I normally saw asked a colleague from Moorfields, Dr Rebecca Papadopoulos, for a second opinion. It was like finding an angel. She examined my eyes again and said they were in really poor condition. In fact, she thought I only had about 18 months of sight in my left eye it was so badly affected.
Dr Papadopoulos transferred my care to Moorfields at St Georges Hospital, and operated on my left eye within two weeks. I had a trabeculectomy, an operation which lowers the eye pressure by making a small hole in the sclera to allow the aqueous humour to drain away and reduce the pressure on the optic nerve.
My follow-up care was outstanding. Throughout it all, it really felt like Dr Papadopoulos was on my side. She helped me to relax and to stop worrying about what was happening because I finally felt like I was in good hands. Honestly, I think I was a goner until I came to Moorfields. I will be forever grateful for her compassion and expertise.
About a year later, I had the same operation on my right eye. Sadly, the glaucoma had been getting worse and the drops weren’t doing much good, but the operation was phenomenal. I’m now down to not using any drops at all, the pressure is controlled and my eye sight is absolutely fine.
A few weeks’ ago, I was back at Moorfields for surgery on a cataract on my left eye with Dr Kuang Hu. I got the same amazing standard of care, and once again, Moorfields has given me back my sight. I can’t thank the hospital enough and I’ve made a donation as a sign of my appreciation. It’s been four year’s since my first diagnosis, and I honestly think that without Moorfields Eye Hospital I’d be blind by now.