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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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My wife had Reflective Lens Eye (RLE) Surgery through a high

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My wife had Reflective Lens Eye (RLE) Surgery through a high street optical chain in March 2013. She was told this would enable her to read, write and drive comfortably without glasses. At the same time she was given a standard small print form designed to seek to protect the optical chain in the event of anything going wrong. She read and signed the form.
After nearly two years her eye sight is now worse than it was before the surgery ie before surgery +1.75 eyes and now +1.75 left eye and +2.25 right eye. Perfect vision would by 0 eyes.
A brief sequence of events: Post surgery her right eye sight was +1.0 by April 2014, when her left eye was +0.5. The local optometrist with the optical chain then referred her eye surgery to correct her vision in the right eye. The surgeon in charge decided instead to refer her to another centre laser treatment without examining her eyes or providing a good explanation as to why Yag treatment was required instead. The Yag treatment was carried out by a different surgeon and at a different centre. That procedure resulted in a further and rapid deterioration in the vision of her right eye from +1.0 to +2.25 within 5 months, although it seems to have stabilised at that level now.
As left eye, there was also a gradual deterioration – currently to +1.75.
She has also experienced a range of other problems, including:
1. Whilst waiting to be referred to Laser surgery, she was prescribed some contact lens and was advised that she could sleep with them in if she wanted to. However at the subsequent visit a different optometrist advised the prescribed lens should NOT be left in overnight, as this could have adverse side effects including even blindness if she had continued.
2. The surgeon responsible out the Yag laser treatment on her right eye was heard by my wife (who was sitting outside his office waiting to be seen) in a prolonged and heated argument for ~ 30min with a previous patient. He was still very agitated when my wife was called in and was rude to her eg saying “with your age you should go and wear your glasses and not bother about laser treatment”. When my wife suggested that he was upset and might prefer her to postpone her treatment to another date he was dismissive and shouted “if my mother drops dead in this office right now that won’t affect my performance”. He examined my wife’s eye and commented “it doesn’t look too bad” ie may not need Yag. Then he said “if my colleague asked me to do a Yag laser, I’ll do it”!
6. Prior to the Yag treatment she was given a consent form with a small font size. Because of her eye problems she was unable to read the form before signing it. She was told just sign it, so the treatment could go ahead, then we will give you a copy to take home else to read it to you ie the concept of informed consent didn’t appear to have been understood by the staff.
7. During the deterioration of her right eye sight after Yag, she was also given a pair of glasses with 1.75 and 6 weeks later another pair with +2.25 magnification. However both are giving her a headache within minutes of wearing them.
These events over the past 20 months have generated considerable stress, anxiety and frustration as well as requiring my wife to make numerous journeys to different branches of the Optical organization on top of paying ~ £3,000 costs of RLE surgery.
Is my wife likely to have a legal case against the opticians? If so, on what grounds? And from the information provided how strong would you consider the case to be?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.
Alex Watts :

my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this.

Alex Watts :

please let me know what is it you want to achieve?

Customer:

Is my wife likely to have a legal case against the opticians? If so, on what grounds? And from the information provided how strong would you consider the case to be?

Customer:

Could I check that you have received my reply above, as the website says still awaiting Customer Response

Alex Watts : Yes I think there is a case.
Alex Watts : She would need to get a second medical opinion but assuming that agrees then it sounds like they have been negligent
Alex Watts : it's hard to say how strong the case it without seeing all the evidence, but on balance I think there is a claim there
Alex Watts : Can I clarify anything about this today please?
Customer:

Thank you. Sorry delay replying, I'm just back from a conference.

Customer:

When you say my wife would need a second medical opinion what aspect would this refer to e.g. the Yag treatment as the most recent an effect could measured?

Alex Watts :

She would need a second opinion from another medical expert. Probably a specialist.

Alex Watts :

Does that clarify?

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