Today was quite an interesting day. It was surgery day for ophtho so I got in on two surgeries. The first one was on a small dog that had cataracts in both eyes. The doctors performed phacoemulsification and aspiration. What this means is that they went through the cornea, broke up the cloudy lens (a cataract is essentially a cloudening of the lens in the eye) and sucked it out of the eye. They then put in a synthetic lens made of acrylic. This made it so that the dog no longer had cloudy eyes and could therefore see much better. The second surgery was the placement of a scleral prosthesis. The dog had glaucoma (high pressure within the eye that can lead to blindness) which caused the eye to look funny. The veterinarian cut a hold near the top of the eye ball and sucked and pulled out everything in the eye so that all that was left was essentially the shell of the eye. Then, a dark ball (the prosthesis) was was placed into this shell which gave the eye its natural shape again. It was really neat to see this performed. Although the dog will not be able to see out of this eye it is done for cosmetic purposes (make the dog look better) since the dog wasn't able to see out of the eye anyways. These two surgeries took up a bulk of the day with the rest of the day being spent checking on the ophtho patients throughout the hospital.
Tonight I went singing with some of the U of I young group at a nursing home in Champaign and wanted to share a little story. While singing there was an older lady sitting in a wheelchair near a set of closed doors. She kept on trying to open the doors and was saying "Help me, somebody help me." Finally, after a little bit she looked at us and says, "I know you can't help me but at least you could come talk to me." She did not seem to be in a very good mood. So, one of the girls that was singing in our group went over to her and talked to her and ended up bringing her over by us and gave her a songbook. At first she says, "I don't know what I'm supposed to do." It seemed that she didn't really want to sing. However, it didn't take long and she was moving her mouth some with the words as we sang. Sometime later she apologized to us for the "tough spot she put us in." When we went to leave she said good-bye and said it was nice to meet everyone and thanks for coming. Her mood had completely changed. The girl who went over to her had displayed a simple act of kindness and compassion, and it broke through the woman's not so happy mood and by the end she was happy. It just struck me, what a kind gesture can do to brighten someone's mood.
Well, the week is almost half-way over, I really don't know where the time goes. I have my first pathology club board meeting tomorrow (unless I miss it due to my ophtho rotation). I am looking forward to it!