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Optical Express Reviews 17 Nov 2021 21:26 #1

  • SB
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Always get an independent second opinion...........

This review was also posted and verified by Trustpilot on the Optical Express Laser Surgery Trustpilot page on 19 Sept 2021 (Given 1 star)

It’s taken me some time to feel up to writing my review after my experience with Optical Express. Optical Express changed my life for the worst. I was a very happy, active, person before setting foot into Optical Express. I am also a carer for my disabled brother. In short, following Optical Express surgery, I have been left with a useless eye and the life I had has been ruined.

Please do not take eye surgery of any kind lightly, at the very least get a second independent opinion. These operations are not without complications, and many people end up with lifelong trade offs, living with blinding haloes and starbursts, poor night vision, unable to drive, and much more. No surgeon can give you a guarantee that any refractive surgery will last a lifetime to be without glasses, or be without short or long term complications.

I went for a free eye check at what they call a consultation, and out of the blue was told I had cataracts, and told my only option was Lens Replacement surgery. After the free consultation I was contacted a number of times to book surgery. I was repeatedly told they could do both eyes at the same time and they gave me a discount. Believing what I was told, I booked surgery for one eye first. They were very quick to take my full payment upfront.

Right after surgery I had a number of post op issues, including extremely poor vision, but I was told everything was fine. Was told the same at the 2 post op check-ups.

Sadly, days later my eye went completely blind, a severely detached retina was diagnosed. I had to have emergency surgery and further operations to try and repair it, but the damage was too severe and I am now left with a useless left eye.

I cancelled surgery on the second eye on the day I went in for emergency surgery, yet Optical Express continued asking me to book surgery for that.

Despite Optical Express stating in their advertising and terms and conditions they offer 12 month aftercare and further treatment to help you get your vision up to a certain standard, they dropped me after less than 6 months after calling me in a few times to read an eye chart using my detached retina eye. They knew how bad my eye was.

I went to different independent Opticians a few months later and was told my other eye does not need lens replacement surgery due to cataract. I have also since been told by NHS eye surgeons that I do not need any surgery in the other eye. So please please please get a second opinion when private companies tell you that you need surgery or are a perfect candidate suitable for surgery.

From my experience, when things go wrong, people like me are brushed under the carpet. They hope we will not be seen or heard, they remove comments and reviews like mine from their social media platforms and places like Trustpilot. I hope Trustpilot is able to keep my true review available for all to read. I have no doubt Optical Express will do their best to get this review removed.

Optical Express advertising states more than 99% customer satisfaction. For those of you who believe that, please read on. I had a look at my Optical Express file and despite me being left with a badly damaged eye and all the surgeries I went through, someone has completed Optical Express satisfaction questionnaires in my name stating I am completely happy and very satisfied with my vision after my Optical Express surgery and that I would recommend Optical Express and this surgery to friends and family. I stated no such thing.

If you do not need to have surgery for a medical reason, please just don’t take the risk. It is better to live with wearing glasses and contact lenses than risk going blind and being in excruciating pain, always get an independent second opinion.

Dear Optical Express Management, there is no need for you to tell me to contact your customer service team in any reply to this review, I contacted you after you abandoned me and never ever heard anything back. There are no excuses for that and it sums up your true customer service.

I now await further operations on the NHS, one of which is to remove the so called ‘premium lens’ Optical Express sold me,

I leave you to make up your own minds. One thing I wish is that I had found the Optical Express Ruined My Life website before setting foot in Optical Express.

Optical Express Reviews 09 Nov 2021 19:03 #2

  • Bezil25
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I had Natural Lens Replacement with Optical Express in January 2019. Straight away had debilitating glare, haloes, starbursts etc which meant I had to leave my job as it was a matter of time before I had an accident driving. They kept telling me that I need to wait for my brain to adjust. 11 follow-up appointments later there was nothing they could do.

In Oct/Nov 2019 I became so depressed, even suicidal, due to loneliness being stuck indoors as soon as it got dark after being very independent. With loss of freedom to go when and where I wanted, I then used the time to research. That’s when I discovered that there were thousands of other people in the same situation and worse.

I contacted Sasha Rodoy and told her my story and she was an amazing help. Nearly 3 years later after having unregulated refractive eye surgery and into my 3rd long and lonely winter I am coming to the end of litigation.

In hindsight, I can see how people fall for Optical Express’s sales pitch. Bombarded with too much information and lots of calls with a small amount of time to make your decision or you lose your deposit etc. They use false marketing and promotions and I was offered incentives. They minimised the risks and suggest that you get your information from their own website or Trust Pilot that are controlled by themselves.

So I now dread every year from October to March and have to dig deep to get through these long dark months. This is the worst mistake I ever made and it makes me angry to the core that they are still pushing people through their doors deceiving them and ruining people’s lives!

To anybody even contemplating having these procedures done, please please do your independent research first! I paid Optical Express £7,000 for them to do this!

Referral to NHS by Optical Express 09 Nov 2021 14:59 #3

  • Darren W
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Unfortunately I chose to have lasik surgery in February 2020 at Optical Express Newcastle branch, with Dr Erik de Koning.
I didn't get the "guaranteed 20/20 vision" so they recommended that I have an "enhancement procedure" carried out in December 2020, even though I had terrible dry eye issues at that time.
I went for the second procedure, which didn't turn out as planned either. They told me they were going to do lasik again but Dr Manu Mathew changed that to lasek on the day of surgery!
My vision in my left eye is now worse than after the first procedure, and my dry eyes even worse than ever.
Optical Express sent me for a meeting with Dr Manu Mathew a few months after my second surgery and he said "Yes we can carry out an enhancement procedure" and I had to inform him that I had already had this done - by him!
I attended every aftercare appointment they gave me and extra appointments too hoping they could help me with the terrible dry eyes they had left me with, and the blurry vision in my left eye that did not help one bit. But they just fob you off basically.
They then called me and said they were going to refer me to a NHS dry eye clinic, and told my GP that I had asked to be referred, which is not the case at all because they suggested it to me!
I am now hoping that the NHS Ophthalmology department can help me and save me getting up so many times in the night to put drops in my eyes. I have not had an unbroken night's sleep once since the laser eye surgery.
I now have one long sighted eye and one short sighted eye, and terrible dry eyes too. None of which I had pre surgery. I wish I had stuck to wearing glasses that didn't give me any of these problems.
If anyone else is contemplating getting laser eye surgery I would warn them not to do so.

Optical Express Reviews 08 Nov 2021 20:51 #4

  • Darren
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Unfortunately my experience of Optical Express is similar to so many other people's. I had Wavefront guided LASIK at Optical Express Sheffield Meadowhall branch in January 2009. Worst decision of my life. It has left my eyessight, permanently damaged beyond repair and has had a detrimental effect on my mental health.

Immediately after surgery I was left in a lot of pain and couldn't open my eyes until the next day. From the next day (when i could open my eyes again) I suffered from starbursting, glare, halos, ghosting, floaters, visual snow, dry eyes etc. I was told by Optical Express it was normal and would settle down after 3 months and I was given steroid eye drops. After 3 months things had not improved. Long story short, after an unsuccessful "top up" surface treatment by Optical Express I was referred to Moorfields Private. A further two surface treatments made no improvement.

Optical Express then washed their hands of me, refusing to offer any further support to try and correct the damage they have done.

I still suffer from starbursting, glare, halos, ghosting, floaters, visual snow, dry eyes etc. Glasses do not alleviate any of these issues. The only thing that helps slightly is rigid contact lenses (which are very uncomfortable due to my dry eyes). I haven't driven at night for around 11 years.

I have been examined by many experts who are unable to explain why I suffer from these issues. Unless further research helps discover the reasons for these issues and finds solutions, I am resigned to suffering permanent and debilitating issues with my eyesight for the rest of my life. And living the fear of what will happen to my eyesight in the future.

Oh, and I still have to wear glasses for both distance and reading (before surgery I only needed glasses for distance).

Optical Express Reviews 08 Nov 2021 17:25 #5

  • Jooels1962
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Hi i had multi focal lens fitted through optical express early May 2021 and encountered the following problems:

I was in agony during the fitting of my left eye lens and had to ask the surgeon to stop. A stronger aneasthetic was used but i could still feel the pain!!!.

Due to having to wait 5 hours and the complications during surgery i came out of the op at 7pm. I was in shock but as the staff were finishing for the day i wasnt given any recovery time or a proper discussion about my meds.

My vision was checked the following day at the clinic so they could say it was a success but they never checked the back or health of my eye. I had cysts at the back of my left eye which only came to light when i kept asking asking for an appointment as i said i could see something in my eye...

I paid to see another optician who said i needed YAG laser and he had never seen an eye cloud over so quickly following an op.

On top of that one lens is for short and the other long sightedness which was not explained to me. Now I cant see to put makeup on my right eye even with a +10 magnifyer. This is worse as i could see using the magnifyer without glasses before!!!

I was told the cysts have gone (7 weeks after my op) but my left eye sight worsened. I was asked to sign a consent form for YAG treatment to rectify but other advice said no laser until at least 3 months after the op - i was only 7 weeks at that time and the disclaimer form for the YAG was frightening with a long list of what could go wrong.

At this point i paid to see an independent surgeon who identified that my left lens wasnt even fitted in the capular bag and to have YAG laser without monitoring for stability could have cost me my sight. Please note that i had had 6 appointments to check my sight with OE and no one noticed the problem despite me saying something was wrong and my requests to see a specialist were ignored.

I have now been informed that my left lens is also fitted in a tilt so i will need glasses for short distance.

The starbursts are horrendous, i need special glasses for night driving. On top of that i can no longer enjoy the cinema or shows as the lighting distorts my vision and causes nausea.

If i have the ill fitted lens explanted there are further risks to my sight. I feel i am living with a ticking time bomb!!. I try to avoid crowded places as im worried someone will bump into me and dislodge the lens, my relationship has also suffered as it has changed my personality.

I wish i had not fallen for OE's sales spiel, and please believe me when i say that i know more people who have had their sight ruined but are classed as a "success".

If you are in any doubt, please be aware that OE also class my case as a success and say they have fulfilled the contract.

Don't do it 08 Nov 2021 17:20 #6

  • Chops
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Anybody thinking of having lens replacement or laser eye surgery please don't!
I had lens replacement 12 months since and unfortunately was one of the many people damaged. Halos are horrendous.
If I could turn back the clock I'd stick to wearing verifocals. And would be thousands of pounds better off!

Eyes damaged 08 Nov 2021 16:19 #7

  • Jojoella
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Hello everyone

I had my surgery in July 2021 at Optical Express Exeter branch, and unfortunately I didn't heed some of the red flags of rubbish customer service prior to the surgery.

I stupidly gave them benefit of the doubt and now kick myself for not listening to the tiny alarm bell instead of getting swept up into their seduction of perfect unaided vision.

Sadly now although my long vision is impeccable, my now once perfect near vision is shot to pieces, and I can't see to do the basic close up functions that I once took for granted.

Be warned!
The following user(s) said Thank You: Cotton eyed joe

Optical Express Reviews 08 Nov 2021 13:48 #8

  • Steph simpson
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Sadly I didn't discover this group until after my surgery although I tried hard to find negative reviews on optical express they just wasn't there, well they was but little did I know they all got removed!

I had laser eye surgery in both eyes in 2018 and it was the biggest mistake of life, a regret that will carry with me until the end of my days!

I was hit extremely hard by the sales team and everything moved extremely fast, looking back I was actually hounded by them as I couldn't afford the treatment, I had phone call after phone call reducing the deposit I'd need to pay until they went as low as they could.

Once the surgery was complete I walked out of the room with an awful feeling in my stomach that something was very wrong, my sister helped me out the building and guided me on our train journey back home.

I woke up the next day ready to return for my check up, another train journey almost 2 hours of travelling almost blind, it was absolutely horrific. Once I arrived in Exeter I exited the train and couldn't see and thing, not the people stood in front of me, the exit signs, the platform, the staircase, once out on the busy High Street the world was just a massive blur, a huge world of blurriness rushing around me, I couldn't read the massive shop signs. From that moment on my life and my world was a completely different place, a lonely place and a scary place.

I entered the clinic in my sunglasses with my runny eyes still streaming, even with my glasses on the lights were too much to bare, I had my exam and was told that was happening to me was very rare and my eyes were suffering from inflammation, I was given the good old eye drops and told to go home rest and use the eyes drops at the recommended times. I continued with this for around 4 months, every visit I was given a different excuse as to why I couldn't see ranging from, inflammation, my eyes need to adjust to surgery, I wasn't eating enough fish oil and my diet was wrong. My last visit to optical express I was shouted at my the optometrist that I wasn't answering the questions correctly as one of my biggest problems since surgery is my vision is constantly changing and my eyes continue to go in and out of focus. When I took my head out the brace to question the lady she was sat facing the screen with her eyes screwed up in temper. I knew from that moment that I would never return to optical express and it was detrimental to my mental heath which was already suffering. I left the clinic and never returned, I went home and wrote a complaint about this lady and battled with optical express for well over a year until I gave up. She denied my claims and nothing more was done.

Before surgery I was talked into having the more expensive surgery as I would get a full refund if it was unsuccessful, the words they actually used were we offer this as it never goes wrong! So like a fool I signed up to it costing me the best part of £5000 to ruin my eyesight, again I battled and battled for my refund but never got it or saw it, at first I was told I couldn't apply until I'd made 12 months of payments, then I was told I couldn't apply as I refused to have more laser surgery to correct my eyes. Then it was just a point blank no we are not refunding your money so to be honest after hitting the wall time and time again I just gave up and wanted to put the whole thing behind me.

The surgery cost me my job as I was working with vulnerable children in an assessment centre, I was left not being able to distinguish my own children in the playground or being able to see them during an Christmas assembly or any other special event. The surgery reversed my vision and made me become short sighted where I was always long sighted. I live in a constant world of blurriness, I'm unable to distinguish friends when they drive past me and wave. My world is full of double vision, Star bursts, halo's, migraines, dry eyes ( a reason my own optometrist at specsavers wouldn't allow me to have contact lenses, something I told optical express but they said it would be fine) insomnia and regret.

I began I small claims court proceedings which I cancelled due to many reasons but mainly the fear of having to sit through a hearing with very poor vision and my mental health I just felt like I couldn't take and more.

I was put in contact with a solicitor who never got back to me or contacted me back so I gave u with that route and just decided to let it go!

So much was taken from my life the day I had surgery that can never be given back,

In March 2020 I had an assessment with the NHS who said my eyes were damaged beyond repair and that my nerves had gone into constant spasms and no laser surgery or glasses would correct my vision. Exactly the opposite of what Optical Express had said and they also stated they wanted more money for the surgery as it had passed 12 months!

That's my experience of Optical Express and I advise any person to steer well clear and never have this surgery.

Optical Express have also blocked me from all their social media sites to prevent me from leaving honest reviews!!!!

Over Correction 08 Nov 2021 10:29 #9

  • Matt
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After receiving a shocking service from OE followed by a year of cover ups and lies until I became so utterly depressed I gave up fighting. I remained quite low and it brought up a lot of shame and embarrassment for me. I did manage to get my medical notes after much hassle and follow ups.
My story isn’t as bad as others I can still see distance but have no close up vision and also extremely dry eyes that I need drops for multiple times a day and suffer extreme headaches multiple times a month.
The embarrassment comes from not researching or understanding fully what I was getting myself into.
I had perfect near vision but needed glasses to drive or see distance especially at night.
I went for a consultation with a sales person and told them I hated wearing glasses and this was my reasoning for enquiring about surgery, I was actually sold a more expensive procedure because they said as I aged it would mean I didn’t need to have more surgery. I was hard sold a procedure and was told I would not need glasses.
Once the surgery was complete my vision close up was completely destroyed meaning I actually needed glasses more than before.
For the best part of a year they told me it would come back and made me do exercises using a pen etc.... and guaranteed my near vision would correct itself.
Eventually after multiple visits to Optical Express Cheltenham branch seeing various people a temp filling in told me the truth, that my near vision would not return.
OE then offered me another surgery to correct the damage and again then I was told this could not be undone, so yet more lies until eventually I was offered a lens replacement procedure, which I refused. Because I refused they refused to continue any aftercare and I walked away. This was a few years ago and its only 5 or 6 years later that I am only just able to talk about it. The medical notes I received say in black and white reason for procedure: "client hates and no longer wants to wear glasses."
I feel stupid, embarrassed and extremely depressed that I have to live the rest of my life suffering from headaches and dry eyes that are painful.
I have to remain lucky that the effects aren’t as bad as some and I can still see distances. But the constant headaches and multiple times a day I need to put eye drops in my eyes is really taking it’s toll on my mental well-being.
Thanks for taking the time to read this.
admin: My first response when I realised my eyes were ruined after laser surgery was to feel stupid that I'd taken this risk - and guilt, unable to tell my partially sighted sibling what I'd done, who'd have given anything to simply need glasses!

But it's the industry who should be ashamed, not its victims!

If you're not already a member of MBEF closed Facebook group, do request to join as you'll find hundreds of people there with similar issues

Wish I had seen this website prior to surgery! 04 Nov 2021 09:34 #10

  • Siobhan
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If you are here because you are doing research before letting OE touch your eyes then I congratulate you! Sadly I did not do that much. I trusted this company! I never thought I'd be in the 'rare' category. However what OE say is rare side effects are actually extremely common and had I known this then I would NOT have let them touch my eyes!! I had lens replacement in February 2020 and I knew the following day that there was a problem. I had a 'few' follow ups - not many due to Covid - but each time I was seen they kept telling me that my eyes would settle down. At this point I had glare and starbursting all day long (not just at night) and it was MAJOR (not minor which they advise about) - it prevented me from driving at night time. Let me tell you THEY DO NOT CARE. They are only interested in MONEY. Once my 12 months were up they have offered to take these lenses out and replace them with mono lenses which would mean I would need to go back to wearing glasses. The whole point of me paying out £7k was to not wear glasses. This was being offered but guess what............ I would need to pay them to do it!! I STILL have all the issues now that I did then and driving at night is only done locally and with caution. In November last year I went through a very dark time with mental illness due to these ongoing issues. Honestly please please do not let them touch your eyes. They are not regulated to do so, you are not their patient and they do not care. You are a Customer (although they definitely do not stand by the customer is always right) - sadly to them the customer is always wrong. They get you to sign a piece of paper saying you acknowledge things can go wrong....... but they don't say how OFTEN this happens...... I thought it was rare.... it's not rare - it is very very commonplace. If you are here, like me, looking for support/help because they ruined your eyes then I'm sorry to hear that.. I wish you all the best.