My name is Pádraig (Patrick) and I am a keen amateur golfer from Galway, Ireland (my name gives it away). I’ve been playing golf since I was a boy, starting out with one of my dad’s cut down five irons and I’ve been playing more since I retired. I’ve never been good enough to turn professional, but I’ve a good handicap and enjoy the challenge of the game, meeting up with friends on the green and in the clubhouse to discuss the best hybrid to improve my game, or just to put the world to rights. Golf also helps to keep me fit and active since I’m on the course for about four hours each round I play.
The problem with cataracts
For some time I realised that no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t track the ball I had just hit. This made for a miserable round of golf as I constantly had to ask for help to find my ball. I didn’t play golf so much and missed the game. On the advice of my beloved wife (I think I was getting under her feet at home!) I went to my optometrist to check if my cataracts had got worse. I already knew that I had cataracts as I’d seen my optometrist when I experienced difficulties moving from shade to sunlit areas on the golf course, a symptom of cataracts I didn’t know about until then. At that time I was given glasses to help me. This visit, my optometrist said my cataracts could no longer be improved by changing my glasses. I was referred to an eye specialist for surgery to remove the cloudy lens and replace it with a clear plastic one.
Technology is advancing all the time and instead of my cataract being replaced with a conventional single focus intraocular lens implant which provides good distance vision, but usually requires the use of reading glasses or bifocals for reading. I was given a high-tech lens implants that not only helps me track the golf ball, but also allows me to read my score card without reading glasses, which was something I hoped for, but isn’t guaranteed to happen for everyone.
I was nervous about the surgery, but it was a simple procedure and the anaesthetist did a great job so that I didn’t feel a thing. I was advised not to get sweat in my eyes and not to wash my face either, so it was three days before I went out on the course again. It was wonderful! I am back playing golf with my friends, which proves that you can play golf after cataracts.