"Cataract Removal after Emergency"

About: Gold Coast University Hospital

(as the patient),

When I found I had cataracts in both eyes, my optician put me on the waiting list with the Gold Coast University Hospital (GCUH), as he explained that the cataracts were getting larger and thicker and could induce a closed angle glaucoma attack which could render me blind. I am in my late 60's and have had closed acute angle glaucoma since my 30's and had eye laser to counteract the pressure building since my early 40's. 

Earlier this year my husband rushed me to the Gold Coast University Hospital A & E Dept. with a Closed Angle Glaucoma Attack. For those that have not heard or had one of these attacks, they are not for the faint hearted. My BP was over 205/110, (I am normally low to normal BP), the pain in my head and eyes was so excruciating that I was vomiting with diarrhoea at the same time. The pain and pressure behind my eyes and in my whole head was something to be believed, it was absolutely terrifying. 

At the A & E the most compassionate male nurse (or doctor?) repeatedly assured me I would be ok, whilst every 10 min putting drops in my eyes to reduce the pressure which was from memory 72 in the left eye and 76 in the right. (My husband is having drops for his high eye pressure which is high at 20!) This staff member was definitely the best person to be attending to me on that night and I will be forever grateful for the calm, expedite and professional manner he treated me with and called in a senior Opthalmologist who arrived about 20 minutes later.

I was then put onto category 1 for the cataract operation the following week. This was cancelled due to my extreme high BP and feeling still very unwell from the attack five days earlier which had rendered my immune system to go haywire. As it is a teaching hospital, my only criticism would be that new doctors/nurses do not attempt to put a cannula into a patient until they have had more practice! This added to my stress level that day.

The following week I had the Operation. Absolutely smooth running, painless, no issues. Now getting booked in for my second eye and have no concerns at all after seeing the surgeon today who was gentle and kind, took all the time in the world with me and a credit to her profession.  I will let you know how the 2nd one goes. BTW having never been admitted to hospital for anything in my life, this hospital is more like a five star hotel and everyone I have spoken to in this hospital for whatever reason has been beyond reproach. Well done GCUH!

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