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Reply: OPTIMAX + ULTRALASE

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22 Apr 2021 10:44 #273

NG

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It’s been 8 days since I went back to Optimax for my lens explant, the worst experience of my life! I am still in disbelief, and I was scared and dreading the procedure but I knew that I had to go through with it even though it was the last thing I wanted.

Before I underwent the implant surgery in 2005 I was informed that the ICL could only move out of place if I received a blow to the eye, but so many years later I have now been told that it can be dislocated by simply rubbing the eyes. Why was I not told this beforehand? I was misinformed and given a false sense of security.

Before my explant surgery I was given anaesthetic drops and an injection in the eye, but I could see the procedure being performed, which was invasive and horrific. After the surgery my left eye was swollen and I was unable to open it all until the next morning. I was so afraid that I would never be able to see through it again.

When I did eventually open my eye the next morning it was completely blood shot, so I kept the eye guard on for several days as I didn’t want to frighten my children.

It has been a very long week and I am now left with good vison in my right eye and poor vision in my left eye. I have been told that I can wear a contact lens in my left eye after a month. But in the meantime I have to cope with this imbalance of vision, and try to get on with everyday life, which is really difficult as I am experiencing double vision and headaches.

The whole experience has left me feeling very low and I question how this was allowed to happen, if I was informed of the ECC risk I would have continued to attend yearly appointments at Optimax rather than with my optician. This risk and the implications were never discussed with me prior to my surgery, and I don’t know if I would have gone ahead if they had been.

So entirely due to lack of communication on Optimax’s part I find myself in the situation I am in today.
10 Apr 2021 14:04 #272

David Brown

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I have worn glasses (short-sighted) since the age of 15 and now at 42 am rapidly reaching the age where I will possibly need reading glasses at some stage over the next few years. Given the pandemic and the fact that I've not been able to go on holiday since November 2019, I was in a position where I'd be able to afford laser eye surgery.

I went to Optimax in Leeds on Friday 9th October 2020 when I had all the relevant eye tests but was told that my cornea were too thin for laser treatment, and was offered the implantable contact lens as an alternative. My prescription is -4.75 in my left eye and - 3.25 in my right eye.

I had paid my deposit and was all set to go today (10th April) but yesterday I opted out of the surgery and cancelled - so what put me off?

In the week leading up to my appointment, I found that the Optimax centre in Leeds were unable to answer (what I thought to be) some very straightforward questions I had. There was, of course, no available specialist to answer my queries and I was also worried that they were wanting full payment to be made some two days before the surgery was to take place. Even now, I wouldn't be able to tell you the name of my proposed surgeon who was going to carry out the surgery. They provided no paperwork with this important information, so that I have been unable to look at his experience and success or failure rates.

A bit perturbed by the above, I set about looking for reviews of Optimax after work on Thursday afternoon, and am glad that I did, but wish I had done this sooner, as I wouldn't now be in the potential position of losing a £1,000 deposit.

Having read some of the horror stories however, especially concerning the possibility of cell damage with these lenses, and the need for an ECC test every year, that was not explained to me, plus lack of aftercare, customers experiencing starbursts, halos, dry eyes, and worsening vision post surgery, I am fully confident that I have had a lucky escape.

The surgeon told me that I could have both my eyes operated on at the same time, which is apparently a big no-no, as well as the possible complications and side effects being buried deep in a six page customer declaration form.

At the end of the day, £1,000 is a lot of money, but it pales into insignificance compared to the stories I have subsequently read on the internet. I would really encourage anyone who is wanting to have surgery to do some serious research before going ahead with the procedure. I was unaware, until finding information on a website that most companies pay their staff commission on sales and the whole eye refractive industry is unregulated.

I was definitely not fully informed and would appreciate any advice you can offer to help me recover my £1,000 deposit.

You only get one pair of eyes, and I for one, will be sticking to glasses and contact lenses.

Many thanks in advance.

David Brown
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29 Mar 2021 19:59 #271

Samantha

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My story...

2 weeks ago I went for a consult at Optimax in Leicester and decided to go ahead with surgery a couple of weeks later. I feel like I experienced fantastic service and felt very comfortable to go ahead with LASIK.

During the week between the consultation and deciding to go ahead, I felt like I had done all my due diligence on the company and the procedure.
I now know I had barely scratched the surface.
I paid my money and booked everything in for the following Thursday.
In the meantime I found out about My Beautiful Eyes Foundation and as part of my due diligence I reached out to ask some questions.

Monday morning and Sasha called me and I feel like I’ve dodged a bullet. After a good conversation I felt completely confident backing out of surgery.

Luckily, the clinic were fantastic about everything and at no point did I feel pressured to go through with anything.
As much as I think that refractive surgery is super-sketchy, Optimax did give me a great service.

I think anyone considering Laser Eye surgery should have a conversation with Sasha, if you come out the other side feeling confident of the outcome then I’d be surprised, so many unknowns!

I have to admit, during the first moments of the phone call I was skeptical of her claims and I felt 99% sure I would be continuing with my planned LASIK at Optimax in Leicester on the Thursday.

But after hearing the emotion in her voice after just a few minutes, I spent the following couple of hours going down the rabbit hole researching refractive laser surgery outcomes...

I couldn’t believe what I was reading, it sounded horrific.

I could not in all good conscience go ahead with my surgery on the Thursday based on the unpredictability of the outcome.

I couldn’t thank Sasha enough for calling me.

When Optimax had been telling me that in a few years I will need reading glasses I felt like this is a misleading term as it appears that, from my brief research, that the more accurate warning of: ‘in a few years you will need glasses for anything nearby’ would seem to be more applicable.

I didn’t think it was worth the risk for me, I wear contacts or glasses and both give me 100% crystal clear problem free vision guaranteed.

The woman on the phone at Leicester I spoke to after I decided to back out, couldn’t have been any more understanding about me now not wanting to go ahead with it.

As bad as the surgery is, I cannot fault the front-of-house side of things. They totally understood my concerns and left things really amicable with me if I decided to change my mind.

So far I’ve had them cancel the finance (which I’ve had confirmed by email) and a couple of days later got my £500 refunded to my credit card without any issues.

I hope this is useful to someone else in my position.
29 Mar 2021 13:40 #270

NG

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I had implantable contact lenses in 2005, my surgery went well and I have had 20/20 vision since. I attended aftercare appointments with a consultant until 2009, as all was fine 4 years after I had my surgery I decided to have regular checkups/eye tests at my opticians rather than going to Optimax, none of my eye tests detected any problems with my sight.

11 years after my surgery I received a letter in 2016 stating that I needed a ECC (Endothelial cell count) check. Back then the letter left me very confused as I had never been made aware of this risk, and thought that it must be a general letter and didn’t apply to me due to the fact that this had never been explained to me during my aftercare appointments.

I believe that a consultant ophthalmologist should have called me to explain this risk and the serious implications so that immediate checks and recommendations could be made in a timely manner. I do believe that Optimax had a legal, moral and ethical duty to inform me of this risk in a better manner than they did, as I thought this was not applicable to me so I disregarded the letter.

In February 2021 I received the same letter, so I decided to book an appointment with Optimax at a charge of £35. My appointment date was Friday 19th March 2021 where I underwent an Endothelial cell count check (ECC). The optometrist told me that my cell count in my left eye was very low, only 665 cells, and that also the lens clip towards my nose had come out of place. This means that the ICL has to be removed from my left eye otherwise it could cause serious problems. Then I will have to go back to using a contact lens in my left eye. This is negatively life changing for me.

The lack of communication from Optimax has left me in a compromising situation where I am having to undergo invasive surgery which could have been avoided if Optimax had been more diligent with their communication, ensuring they make contact with every patient like me to explain these risks rather than just send a letter out of the blue; I do not accept this was good enough.

I am now left feeling anxious and very upset, unable to eat or sleep properly as this situation has severely affected me psychologically. I intend to seek expert advice as I am finding it difficult to come to terms with this situation and do not believe that Optimax have taken accountability for their actions.

I attended an appointment with the Medical Director, Dr Llango, on Monday 22nd March and I was horrified to be told that the lens in my left eye had moved due to the pupil contracting and forcing the lens to move up and down. I believe it may not have been secured properly during the surgery, in turn causing this irreversible damage to my eye.

I have contacted Optimax, and have requested they provide a copy of my original consent form, as I am 100% sure that this ECC risk was not included in the form when I underwent my surgery in 2005. I have also asked them to forward my ECC readings from 2005 to 2009, as I am certain they were never conducted or ever discussed with me during my pre-op or aftercare appointments.

I have informed Optimax that I would like to speak to a doctor with regards to the long term effects the low Endothelial cell count will have on my sight in the future as I am extremely worried. I would also like Optimax to review my case thoroughly and provide me with answers as to why this was allowed to happen.

My surgery date to explant my lens has been set for Wednesday 14th April, but I intend to see an independent surgeon for a second opinion before the op.
23 Mar 2021 23:44 #269

OptimaxRML

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Last month, Optimax spent in excess of an estimated £180,000 for three full page colour ads that ran for two days in The Times, Express and Daily Mail newspapers. Eventhough this is clearly an advertisement it is fraudulently not made clear that Harriotte Lane was paid for her gushing endorsement of Optimax.

When asked via Twitter, Harriotte (rhymes with carrot) admitted this to 'My Beautiful Eyes Foundation' campaigner Sasha Rodoy (who was irreparably damaged by laser eye surgery at Optimax in 2011).



Presumably Terry Hollingsworth, also featured in the ad, was paid too, but he has yet to be asked.

This has been reported to the Advertising Standards Authority.

Russell Ambrose claimed insolvency and entered a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) on 27 November 2020, screwing over 22 of his loyal Optimax staff made redundant in the process (having nauseatingly told them ‘Love to you all’ in an email on 5 October).

Struggling without money before Christmas, they each lost £5,000 due to their boss’ underhand actions - and had to claim owed wages from the government!

There is something untoward going on here, because Ultralase is not claiming insolvency even though the two companies act as one, with same surgeons and same premises!

Because of this, our advice to anyone thinking about risking their eyesight to unregulated refractive surgery, you should definitely avoid both Optimax and Ultralase UK because the owner is dodgy and devious and it's uncertain if his companies will still be in business in 6 months time!

It is understood that Russell Ambrose has also defaulted on the legal Settlement Agreement he signed with Sasha Rodoy in 2012 so she is now forced to consider legal action. The fallout from this should be entertaining when lockdown is over as the enterprising activist never fails to surprise the industry with her actions!

If there are any demos planned outside Optimax clinics we'll be sure to let you know.

Or, register for updates here: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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23 Mar 2021 20:27 #268

Tasha

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I had lasek at Optimax Milton Keynes clinic in August 2019.
I am now left with a constant feeling of dread worry and anxiety.
The pain and daily torment from the recurrent corneal abrasions I now suffer from is excruciating.
*Migraines
*Severe dry eye
*Meibomian gland dysfunction
The real risks were not truly discussed with me.
Have they been discussed with you?

DO NOT PUT YOUR LIFE IN THE HANDS OF THESE BUTCHERS.

I was sold a dream! I'm now living a nightmare!
To top that off I've brought my whole family along for the ride!

The surgeon was Dr Sajjad Mughal.
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