New glasses - like reading lines in a fun house mirror

Discussion in 'Glasses' started by BobW, Sep 28, 2004.

  1. BobW

    BobW Guest


    I got new glasses a few days ago.

    Prescription: R: Sphere -1.25 Cylinder -.75 Axis 115
    L: Sphere PL Cylinder -.75 Axis: 095
    Add +2.25

    I haven't a clue what the above numbers mean.

    Now the lines on a page appear wavy. Sometimes. Sometimes the lines
    are ok, then become very wavy.

    I understand that I now have a correction for astigmatism, the
    previous glasses I had did not have this correction and there was no
    wavyness at all, just a bit of blur of small type.

    I am told that it may take some time to get use to this - but I cannot
    believe it. If lines get wavy thru these lenses today - can I really
    expect that they will not get wavy next week??

    I am considering going to a new optometrist - but this can get pretty
    expensive since I've already had the exam and have purchased two sets
    of glasses.

    Can anyone enlighten me??

    BobW, Sep 28, 2004
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  2. BobW

    Dan Abel Guest

    I'm not a pro, and I'm not so sure about the "wavy", but whether lines are
    straight or not has more to do with the brain than with the glasses and
    eyes. When our eyes send images to the brain, the brain has learned what
    "straight" means and will make that determination. When you get new
    glasses, especially with a change in astigmatism, you are sending
    different images to the brain. Even though they may be more accurate
    images, the brain still needs to relearn what is straight and what isn't.
    This takes a few days.
    Dan Abel, Sep 28, 2004
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  3. BobW

    BobW Guest

    This prescription is progressive - and is not the first I've had of this
    type which I
    find considerable better than the glasses with the line for reading. I don't
    off hand the correction/prescription for the last pair of glasses, but I
    know there
    was a big change in the right eye. I will see if I can find the old

    The waviness on the line of text varies from rolling up an down across the
    to a falling off of the line, that is, as if the line on the right side is
    further away, like
    the page is falling off or slanting to the right.

    BobW, Sep 28, 2004
  4. BobW

    Otis Brown Guest

    Dear Bob,

    Subject: Wavy lines -- produced by "astigmatic correction"?

    There is no absolute requirement that you be
    "corrected" for astigmatism.

    If the "wavy lines" give you a problem,
    go back and ask for "spherical lenses".

    If they will not do that for you -- then
    let us know.


    Otis Brown, Sep 29, 2004
  5. BobW

    Dom Guest

    When you say wavy, do you mean a line looks squiggly or just curved?

    Do walls lean, do floors slope? Do square pieces of paper look like a
    parallelogram? If yes, give them a few weeks.

    Apart from being wavy, is the print you are reading *clear*? and is long
    distance vision clear? If so, persevere for a few weeks, then go back to
    your prescribing optometrist, who *may* decide to reduce or eliminate
    the cylinder component.

    However if your vision is *blurry* as well as wavy, then there may be an
    error in the specs, perhaps take them back sooner.

    You should always give the original prescriber an opportunity to help
    you out.

    Dom, Sep 29, 2004
  6. (Otis Brown) wrote in
    Other than the comfort, well being, and visual acuity of the patient, of

    Scott Seidman, Sep 29, 2004
  7. BobW

    Dan Abel Guest

    That's true. Of course, with some level of astigmatism you can't get a
    driver's license (or pilot's license I suppose). Then again, there's no
    requirement that people have a driver's license. Of course, your
    employment opportunities are limited without one, not to mention quality
    of life sometimes, but who needs a life? I knew a guy who needed fairly
    minor surgery to take out a cancerous prostate. He chose not to. There's
    no absolute requirement that you have a cancerous prostate removed
    surgically. Of course, then he died. He actually thanked people for
    allowing him to choose his own course of treatment. Of course they
    couldn't have forced him, but they could have bugged him. It wasn't even
    aversion to medicine, since he had been an RN in his previous job and
    worked some years in a critical care unit.

    And then what would we do?
    Dan Abel, Sep 29, 2004
  8. BobW

    BobW Guest

    Thanks for your reply,

    If I understand you correctly, the correction for astigmatism which
    causes the wavy lines is not required - but if it is not required, why
    was it prescribed?

    What broght me into the eye doctor was that I noticed some bluriness
    of people's faces starting at about 25 feet - at about 50 ft there was
    considerable blurines, and if I did not recognize profile and walk, I
    could not make out the person. Does astigmatism cause this?

    BobW, Sep 29, 2004
  9. BobW

    BobW Guest

    some snipping here:
    Bob: Well, the waviness does come and go - especially when I move my
    head - ie, just a tilt for more light for instance - will make the
    kind of fall off to the fight - then when I bring my head back
    perfectly upright there appears to be a kind of upward undultation
    (not a sexy one thought) in the line for a moment, kind of until I
    really concentrate my eyes on the page.
    Bob: Well, the new prescription did improve far vision - but I don't
    know if it was a change in the overall prescription that improved the
    far vision or the astigmatism correction - that's mainly because I
    don't know what an astigmatism correction is. I would have asked if
    the eye doc would have mentioned it to me!
    Bob: If I give it time to adjust then, the problem will get worse?
    Sorry I don't quite follow here and it seems a very important issue???

    BobW, Sep 29, 2004
  10. BobW

    BobW Guest

    Just what problem in vision is caused by astigmatism?

    BobW, Sep 29, 2004
  11. BobW

    BobW Guest

    big snip -25

    Just curved - either upward curve (the line going up and over a bump),
    or kind of falling off to the left (disappearing into the distance
    downward and left).
    YES - that is also just exactly what is happening. What is it?
    Words are perfectly clear, I'm just getting a bit of sea sickness
    reading the lines as the curve up down and down and out. The far
    distance is considerably improved. It is just at near and at computer
    range where there is a problem.
    I will.

    BobW, Sep 29, 2004
  12. BobW

    Dan Abel Guest

    There is an assumption being made here that the astigmatism correction is
    causing the distortion. That may or may not be. I'm not your OD (not
    anybody's), but I've been examined many times. The OD is always working
    to give the sharpest image. They give you the astigmatism correction that
    gives the sharpest image.

    Yes. It causes the image to not focus correctly on the retina.
    Dan Abel, Sep 29, 2004
  13. BobW

    Dom Guest

    Sounds like aniseikonia, a side effect of astigmatism correction which gives
    the distortions you described. You can fix it quickly by changing the lens
    power to remove the astigmatism correction (the cylinder power) and put up
    with slightly blurrier vision, or better still give your eyes (your brain,
    really) a few weeks to adapt. Then the lines and shapes will be straighter
    plus you'll still have the clear vision.

    These side effects are also possible with progressive lenses, but you
    mentioned this is not your first pair. So I think the cylinder power is the
    likely culprit --> wait & get used to it. If no improvement after 4 weeks of
    full-time wear then go back to your optometrist.

    Also might pay to have the frame adjustment double-checked.

    Dom, Sep 30, 2004
  14. This prescription is progressive - and is not the first I've had of this

    Its been said that when there are problems adapting to progressive
    addition lenses, 90% of the time it's due to a less than optimum fit.
    The percentage of my clients that have had problems with a .75
    cylinder power is probably less than 0.1%. I would recommend a
    thorough inspection of the eyeglasses for the correct Rx, and just as
    importantly, that the lenses are positioned correctly in front of the

    Hope this helps

    Robert Martellaro
    Roberts Optical

    "Science is a way of trying not to fool yourself."
    - Richard Feynman
    Robert Martellaro, Sep 30, 2004
  15. Scott Seidman, Sep 30, 2004
  16. BobW

    Otis Brown Guest

    Dear Bob,

    Subject: When is astigmatic "correction" needed?

    The approach of using "correcting" astigmatism developed
    because it was found that additional "sharpness" could
    be achieved in some eyes by applying "cylender" at an

    If you wish very, very sharp vision then of course
    you can turn the dials of a phoropter and make
    vision very sharp indeed -- sharper than
    20/20 in some cases. But this is looking
    through the small aperture of a phoropter
    in a darkened room looking at a projected
    Snellen chart. Thus your field-of-view
    is sharply restricted.

    When a person receives glasses cut for astigmatism,
    he often complains of "wavy lines" and the like,
    and is unhappy with this result. The normal
    reaction is that he goes back to the OD,
    and he is told, "you will get used to it".
    If that satisfies you, then don't worry,
    be happy.

    Fortunately, there are some ODs who are
    more reasonable.

    My wife had her eyes checked, and had
    the "astigmatism" added. She saw
    the same result that you did. From
    long experience, I was well aware of this
    effect. Since the OD who provided the lens
    knew of this effect, he basically suppled
    a "spherical" prescription. The result
    is that she passes all the required legal
    requirements -- and avoids the headaches
    produced by the "astgmatism" correction.

    But this comes down to a "trade off".
    If you are "corrected" an pass the
    Snellen-DMV (the legal requirement)
    then that might be an acceptable

    This is my opinion, of course, and
    I always request "spherical" -- if
    the measured astigmatism is less than
    0.5 diopters.

    You will have to make your own

    You can expect the usual "explosion" from the
    ODs on this site (but not all), so be
    prepared for it.



    Otis Brown, Oct 1, 2004
  17. BobW

    Dan Abel Guest

    I think we already knew that Otis is not the typical engineer.

    Dan Abel, Oct 1, 2004
  18. Among eye doctors, engineers have a reputation for being most finicky,
    Engineers are the most idiotic people: except for their own field of
    interest, they understand nothing of the rest of the world.
    Rishi Giovanni Gatti, Oct 1, 2004
  19. BobW

    BobW Guest

    I just got home for the optometrist with a new prescription in hand.

    The old "new" prescription was:

    Prescription: R: Sphere -1.25 Cylinder -.75 Axis 115
    L: Sphere PL Cylinder -.75 Axis: 095
    Add +2.25

    The new prescription is:

    R: Sphere: -1.50 Cylinder -.50 Axis 105
    L: Sphere: -.25 Cylinder -.50 Axis 100
    Add: 2.25

    I'll get the new glasses tomorrow, I hope, and let you all know how it

    Meantime, The Dr. did not really offer an explanation as to why the readings
    from the first new prescription last Friday, to the new prescription today,
    one week

    BobW, Oct 2, 2004
  20. BobW

    Otis Brown Guest

    Otis> But of course! When there vision passes the 20/25
    line, you can put them in a darkened room and
    measure 20/100 or so. And indeed that WILL PRODUCE
    very sharp vision for their child. If the person
    asks for that -- then he should GET IT in more ways
    than one.

    Otis> Of course the child will then develop
    stair-case myopia, but that in not your fault.
    It is because of his BAD HEREDITY. Yes,
    that is is -- blame his genetics.

    Otis> Engineers look at the true facts to work
    towards a better solution of a very-difficult problem.
    An open and creative mind must necessarily be
    part of that process.


    Otis Brown, Oct 2, 2004
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