I am beyond cross tonight, I am so wound up I feel like a coiled spring and woe betide anyone who gets on the wrong side of me tonight!
Why - well here's the story.
When we lived in Hemel, I use to go to Boots Opticians in the town centre. It was a small practice and very good. I always saw the same lady, she knew me, knew my eyes. I have very bad eyesight (most people are anything up to a -6 and these people consider their sight bad, mine are -13!). I automatically transferred to Harrogate Boots, a much bigger opticians as I pay a monthly amount for new lenses yearly and all my eye care. In the last 18 months they have lost my records from Hemel, it took 4 attempts and 4 different opticians to fit a new pair of lenses last year, and this year is shaping up to be no better and I have never seen the same optician twice.
Last week saw me picking up the 2nd pair of lenses in an attempt to get the right fit for my new ones. I also mentioned that occasionally I see a slight shadow across my right eye first thing in the morning which clears within a minute. Due to my prescription and family history I am at risk of detached retina so I was asked to go in on Friday to have my eye dilated and looked at in more detail. Fair enough, I was impressed by the care. The lady I saw (yet another optician) was brilliant and wasn't happy so referred me to the hospital and less than 24 hours later I spent 3 hours on Saturday in the emergency eye clinic seeing a consultant.
The consultant also dilated my eye and was happy with it and said the back of my eye looked very normal for someone with such a high prescription and not to worry so sent me on my way.
Today I should of had a routine contact lens check at Boots, but this morning while on a teleconference my right eye started watering and on investigating I could see a large yellow blister on the white of my eye. I rang the optician who was very undisturbed by it as it didn't hurt and was not impairing my vision and told me to go in at my allotted time. I took my lenses out however as I wasn't happy with it. It has to be bad for me to wear glasses as despite the ultra thin lenses they are still like bottle bottoms.
Yet another new optician looked at it and said it looked like a blister or cyst and was probably nothing to worry about. She could tell I was not happy with this so eventually said it was my decision if I wanted to go to A and E and get an appointment through them with the eye clinic. I asked her to ring through and refer me and she said there was no need and to go to A and E.
I did, organise my mum and dad to pick the boys up and settled down for a 4 hour wait in A and E. The triage nurse said it just looked red but rang the eye clinic and I was told to go and sit and wait there and they would see me at the end of clinic. I saw the same consultant who started by saying she didn't think it was appropriate for me to be at an emergency clinic but as I had waited so long she would see me to put my mind at rest. She took one look at my eye and actually said 'oh my god'.
These are not the words you want to hear. It seems my bloody optician has failed to see a bloody big ulcer on my cornea which has spread to my stroma and if untreated could blind me. The consultant said if I had of gone home by tonight I would of been in agony and probably ended up admitted on IV antibiotics in an attempt to stop it damaging my sight.
I am now on one type of drops which I have to put in hourly for 24 hours and then 2 hourly for the next 24 hours. A second type of drop 3 times a day and some cream and I am back on Wednesday morning to see her.
I am so, so angry. How could a trained optician miss this? The consultant said it should not of been missed. In my time in the hospital the blister had popped which had spread the infection. The consultant said it could be poorly fitting lenses that has caused it, although I wonder if it could of been the drops being applied. Who knows, point is, I was told it was 'probably nothing to worry about as it doesn't hurt'.
Tomorrow I am taking the lenses into Boots, giving them back to them, asking for a refund for the year I have paid and moving opticians to a small private practice. I will also write to head office and complain and if Boots refuse to refund me, then I am going to try and take it further.