Having taken a football to the eye as a former CFL player for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and the Toronto Argonauts in the late 1960s to the early 1970s, Chip Barrett was no stranger to eye injuries. Luckily, that injury healed and never acted up again. But more eye problems were to come for the football player turned architect in early 2021 when he began waking up virtually blind.
Some days his eyes cleared a little, but each morning he woke up seeing a dense fog. The loss of sight and accompanying dizziness left him anxious and dependent on others, relying on his wife to drive him everywhere.
When Chip was referred to Dr. Steve Levasseur at Surrey Memorial Hospital, the diagnosis was quick, and the information was a relief. It was fixable. His eyes were bleeding inside because his 25-year-old cataract replacement lenses had become loose and were rubbing against his pupils and irises during his sleep.
Chip was confident in the skills and decision making of his doctor, and two surgeries later, his vision came back to 95% in the eye that received the procedures. Today, he’s back at work and can drive himself again. With the second eye soon to receive the same treatment, he looks forward to having his eyesight fully restored.
Ask Chip and he will tell you that he felt like he was more than just a pair of eyes to his doctor. He was a person, and the excellent doctor-patient relationship was tremendously reassuring through such a difficult time!