Patients are referred to St George's Eye Care from throughout the South Island. You can read some of their stories below.

Ivan Beswarick - Cataract surgery - PATIENT STORY
Ivan Beswarick

“An amazing difference” to life following cataract surgery

Ivan Beswarick didn’t notice how bad his eyesight was getting until he found himself struggling to read the paper and look up numbers in the phone book.

“It creeps up on you. You might be aware that your eyesight is deteriorating, but then you suddenly realise you can’t read a street sign until you’re right underneath it,” he says.

The Timaru resident had cataract surgery on both eyes with St George’s Eye Care ophthalmologist Dr Paul Baddeley.

“I was struggling to read the newspaper even with glasses on and driving at night was getting pretty difficult, so I stopped doing it,” Mr Beswarick says.

He also began to lose confidence with driving during the day. Then a friend, who also had cataract surgery with Dr Baddeley at St George’s Eye Care, persuaded him to make the appointment.

The decision to have cataract surgery at St George’s Eye Care was an easy one.

Linda Umbers - Retinal detachment - PATIENT STORY

“I’ve got so much admiration for the St George’s team for how quickly and expertly they handled everything.”

On what was otherwise an ordinary Tuesday morning, Linda Umbers noticed something unusual in her vision.

“It was as if I was looking through a drop of water in my left eye. I had no pain or discomfort, but it definitely seemed strange, and it had appeared quite suddenly, so I thought I’d better get it checked out.”

Her optometrist performed a scan and referred Linda to St George’s Eye Care on the Thursday, to establish the cause of the changes. At 8.30 am on the Friday Linda was seen by St George's Eye Care ophthalmologist Dr Oliver Comyn, who diagnosed a detached retina.

By 11.30 am, Linda was in theatre having a day-stay procedure called a vitrectomy to fix the detachment.

“By the time all the tests were done, and I’d had the situation explained to me, they’d already organised a theatre and pulled a team together to do the operation,” Linda says.

“I’m just blown away by how quickly it was all arranged and ready to go. From arriving that morning not knowing what was wrong, to being out of theatre at lunchtime and waiting for my husband to come and pick me up – it was just amazing.”

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