Jane Bates: I wonder what my patient means

A conversation followiing a cataract operation leaves Jane Bates somewhat perplexed.

A conversation followiing a cataract operation leaves Jane Bates somewhat perplexed.

‘What about my eye pad?’ said a patient, after his cataract operation. Funnily enough I had been compiling basic ophthalmology competencies that morning and ‘the application of an eye pad’ was one of them.

Patients don’t often like being padded up as it’s rather disorientating, but this man evidently did. I began to explain to him that it wasn’t necessary to protect his eye in such a way as his anaesthetic had been topical.

‘I often use one at home,’ he said, which was somewhat puzzling. Luckily I was called away, which gave me a moment’s thinking space. He often what? Was he a pirate in his spare time? Would he want a parrot and a wooden leg too?

Better have a word

On my way back


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