Saturday, November 5, 2016

Eye issues


I've been having trouble with my eyes: the actual eye balls have hurt (and I have a high pain tolerance, so this is a red flag for me), they feel irritated, like something is in there, but there is nothing. Most importantly, my vision is impacted, especially at night as I drive on part of an unlight highway, to such a degree that I have to really slow down, as I can't see and am concerned about a crash! Ack!  I called and after waiting a few weeks, was able to see my opthamologist. I confirmed that he still accepts my medical insurance, as my medical diagnosis of floaters for years triggers this to be a medical and not a simple vision appointment. Fine.

Turns out, I have developed a bumpy surface, bilaterally on both of my corneas, due to dry eye-thanks to my PSA. Fortunately, it was caught early, and is reversable.

The Dr gave me a sample of some OTC eye drops to use 4 times daily, dropping down to 3, then 2 for a while but to continue using them profilactically. Sample box in hand, I headed over to CVS, being told by the DR, "the drops aren't that expensive." I guess it's all relative. I noted that CVS has their own generic version of these drops as an option, BUT there is a twin pack of the name brand on sale @ $15.99, cheaper than the  CVS brand. I bought 2, twin packs of the drops, knowing that I had coupons attached to my CVS card, refund bucks (can't remember what they are called). I was supposed to get an electronic receipt but for some reason, it never came through. I also grabbed this HUGE (think book sized)4 times a day pill planner. With more meds on board, I have to space them appart, due to caffeine as well as possible drug interactions. It was $19.99 but since I got 30% off from a coupon voucher, this translated into a $20 credit, so I am calling this a freebie.

 While my RX for glasses remains at the same strength, my older pair of "back up glasses" is a much weaker RX than I now wear and I wouldn't be confident in using them, should my current glasses break.

A while back, I had decided to update the RX in these  Versace frames that I only wore for 2 years. No sense in getting new frames as a back up pair, these remain in fashion. So once my dialated eyes became more normal, and I felt comfortable driving again (luckily, I am only a 5 minute ride away), I returned to the practice that has an optical shop affiliated with them.  Yes, they are more expensive, but their service is exceptional, we've used them since I came to CT in 1986. I am replacing the lenses and having them add photogray to this pair so that they can also become my "driving glasses." I have a very expensive RX regardless: transition bifocals, astigmatism, near sightedness, Crizal anti glare, upgraded to anti scratch/stronger plastic-not a coating, etc. $$$ but at least I have an annual benefit of something refunded towards either a new pair of glasses ($110?) or a new pair of lenses ($80?). I'll take it. Monies from my HSA were used to pay for the cost, keeping my OOP at $0.

This is definately a frugal luxury to me: 2 sets of updated RX glasses. They should be ready in a week.


Marcia in rural WNY said...

I guess "not very expensive" is different if you are the doctor or the patient. I was given some samples of eyelid wipes (didn't know there was such a thing) and I have blepharitis (itchy eyelids--very annoying, right at the base of the eyelashes.) I found that a 30 pack (one or two a day is recommended) runs around $13.99-15.99, depending on brand. The Rite Aid generic is $10.99 a pack. I guess it's inexpensive compared to "real" medication, but it does add up.

The older I get, the more lotions, potions, and over the counter things pile up that I'm "supposed" to use--and I do use most of them, but it does explain why I can't get ready in half an hour anymore!

Lucy said...

I used to buy Systane for dry eye. Had to use it 3x a day. Tried Dollar General lubricant eye drops(same ingredients) and I only have to use it 2x a day. $4.00/bottle