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The TV advert for laser eye surgery made it sound so straightforward that Lois Roberts didn’t think twice.
‘The idea of just being able to see perfectly as soon as I opened my eyes in the morning seemed fantastic,’ says the law graduate.
She’d worn contacts and glasses for short-sightedness since she was 13-years-old and ‘really looked forward to being able to bin them’.
Regret: Lois Roberts now suffers from painfully dry eyes
‘I also played a lot of sport such as hockey and found wearing glasses annoying,’ she says.
Her parents thought it was such a good idea that they helped pay for the £1,500 cost as a present for her 21st birthday.
Yet, instead of the simple pain-free experience Lois was led to expect, the surgery to correct her short-sightedness left her in agony for days.
Worse, three years on, she still has painfully dry eyes as a result of damage to the nerves that stimulate tears.
Lois has to apply eye drops daily – which in itself is a problem, as long-term use can raise the risk of chronic eye inflammation. Dry eyes can also lead to serious infections and, ultimately, even loss of vision.
As well as dry eyes, Lois suffers from constant floaters and poorer night vision.
‘The floaters are like clumps of black lines and dots,’ she says. ‘I’ve been reassured they’re harmless, but they are incredibly annoying.’
Floaters occur as a result of a popular form of laser surgery in which a flap is cut into the surface of the cornea — the clear, domed part of the eyeball.
The flap is lifted so that the laser can remove some of the corneal tissue underneath, to reshape it. But if the flap is folded back down with wrinkles in it or doesn’t adhere to the eye properly, it can result in speckles in vision. Poor night-time vision occurs because part of the cornea has been lasered incorrectly.
The good news is that the surgery did correct her short-sightedness (previously it was minus 4.5; now she has ‘perfect’ vision).
But I’m upset I wasn’t warned enough at my initial consultation that anything like this could happen,’ says Lois, from North Wales. ‘I would have thought much harder about it had I known the risks.’
This is far from a unique experience. Marketing manager Sarah Carter, 45, is taking legal action after treatment to correct severe short-sightedness (minus 6.5) left her with such dry eyes she needed further surgery.
Unfortunately, this operation also went wrong, and the laser damaged the rim of her eyelids.
As a result, Sarah, from Maidstone, Kent, suffers from painful ingrowing eyelashes, which must be plucked several times a month by an optician. She is about to undergo further eye surgery at Moorfields Eye Hospital, but there is no guarantee of any cure.
Five years since she had the laser eye surgery, she says: ‘I regret ever having it done. It seemed incredibly straightforward and, at the time, I was just fed up of the inconvenience of contact lenses and glasses.
‘But that was nothing compared to the agony I’ve endured since.
‘I can’t wear eye make-up any more, and my days are full of drops, ointment and constant eye irritation.’
‘I can’t wear eye make-up any more, and my days are full of drops, ointment and constant eye irritation’
Every year, 100,000 Britons undergo laser eye surgery, which alters the shape of the cornea to correct long and short-sightedness.
First carried out in Britain in 1989, the technique was marketed as an end for the need to wear contact lenses and glasses.
Since then, a whole range of different types of laser surgery have become available.
However, some experts are concerned that the multi-million-pound industry glosses over some unpleasant, and sometimes serious, side effects.
Last year, a Which? report claimed six out of ten opticians offering laser eye surgery — including branches of big chains such as Optical Express, Optimax and Ultralase — gave unsatisfactory advice and failed to point out the risks.
These include not only dry eyes, floaters and poor night vision, but also growths where the eye is cut, double vision, foggy vision, chronic eyelid inflammation and even loss of sight.
Shockingly, there is no law preventing any surgeon from operating as an ‘eye expert’ — though the Royal College of Ophthalmologists awards a Certificate of Competence after a surgeon has demonstrated expertise in laser eye surgery. It recommends patients choose a surgeon with a minimum of three months’ formal training in laser eye surgery who performs at least 500 eye laser operations a year.
Laser surgery can have permanent side effects such as dry eyes and poor night vision
The Royal College says at least 75 per cent of patients undergoing laser surgery should end up with 20/20 vision. However, one in three still need glasses — and even when eyesight is successfully corrected, some will also be suffering from some sort of side-effect.
The ‘overall risk’ of something going wrong with laser surgery — including floaters and dry eyes — is ‘less than 5 per cent’, according to its report published this year.
The risk of serious complications — such as losing your eyesight — is less than 0.2 per cent. Worryingly, it admits the risk of complications at individual clinics can be as high as 40 per cent.
Retired optometrist Dominic Devlin was so concerned about the lack of information about potential risks, he set up a website to help consumers.
‘As part of my research, I’ve been to consultations and have been surprised how little is made of potential problems that might occur,’ he says. Mr Devlin is also concerned many patients believe laser surgery is a permanent cure and think they’ll never have to wear glasses again.
‘The truth is laser eye surgery is not a lifetime fix. Side-effects from surgery mean some people will still need glasses for night-time and, as eyesight changes as we grow older, the vast majority will eventually need glasses for reading.’
Furthermore, he says, surgery can be much more painful and the recovery time might take much longer than people are sometimes led to believe. As illustrator David Holroyd, 57, learned to his cost.
‘The surgery lasted only minutes, but was terrifying. Had I known how painful it would be, I never would have had it done’
Eighteen months ago, he underwent laser eye surgery for short-sightedness, paying £2,600 for treatment at a private clinic near his Manchester home.
‘I’d seen a TV advert that made it look as if it was something you could have done in your lunch hour,’ he says. ‘I was struggling with several pairs of glasses — not only did I need bifocals generally, I also had a pair for reading.’
David says his consultation lasted 20 minutes, the surgery sounded straightforward and there was no mention of pain.
Yet he claims that within seconds of starting the surgery, he was writhing in agony.
My head was in a clamp so I couldn’t move, but I could feel every brush of the laser.
‘I’d had local anaesthetic drops put into my eyes, but the doctors could see from my face I was in excruciating pain.
‘I was in too much agony to even speak, let alone tell them to stop. Yet all the doctor said was: “We are aware. Try to keep still.”
‘The surgery lasted only minutes, but was terrifying. Had I known how painful it would be, I never would have had it done.’
‘Afterwards, I was in bed for three days, followed by two weeks when my sight wasn’t good enough to go out.’
As well as the pain, like Lois and Sarah he has also been left with dry eyes for which he will need drops for the rest of his life.
Now, though his sight is much better, he has been told his eyes will be permanently dry. ‘I just feel angry that I wasn’t warned about any of this,’ he says.
Mr Devlin is campaigning for a proper independent body where patients can seek advice and complain to if surgery goes wrong. He points out that contact lenses are much more sophisticated and cause fewer problems than they did 20 years ago and may be a safer option than laser surgery.
‘If you have a problem with contact lenses or glasses, you can pop back to the opticians where it can be easily rectified,’ he says.
‘But adverse side effects from laser surgery might be irreversible and permanent.’
Dominic Devlin’s website can be found at laser-eye-surgery-review.com
Do you have a bed bug problem? Replacing the mattress will not always rid your home of a bed bug infestation.
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Jul 31, 2017 3:03 pm Written by admin
Whether it’s a family vacation or a business trip, there’s nothing quite like traveling! A few days away from home is always a nice change of pace, and a great way to “recharge the batteries.” Unfortunately, traveling puts you at greater risk for a bed bug infestation in your home. One of the most well-known bed bug myths is that you’ll only find them in dirty, run-down places, but the truth is that bed bugs prefer places where large amounts of people sleep, and you’re just as likely to find them in an upscale hotel as you are in a seedy roadside inn.
Jul 25, 2017 11:02 am Written by admin
Like most Arkansans, summertime means a lot to you and your family. Whether you’re lounging around the pool, grilling burgers, or simply sitting in your favorite lawn chair enjoying a cold drink and watching your kids play, it’s hard to resist spending time outside. Unfortunately, at the first appearance of mosquitoes, indoors often seems like a much better choice.
Jul 10, 2017 12:49 pm Written by admin
When it comes to pest control, most people are familiar with traps and chemical sprays. Both have their uses, but both are temporary fixes that are designed to keep small infestations from becoming large ones. But what would you say if we told you that adding to or upgrading your attic insulation can create a sustainable pest control solution that will work for the life of your home? It’s true!
Eight 1U dual-core servers with 4 GB RAM, one or two built-in Ethernet ports and 70 to 150 GB of hard disk space can be found quite inexpensively these days, with even more savings if you don’t insist on a first-tier server manufacturer. On the other hand, a 16-core server with 32 GB of RAM, several four-port Ethernet cards and a terabyte or two of disk space can cost considerably more than eight dual-core servers. A quick check of a major brand site produced numbers of $1,339 each for the small servers, or $10,172 total, versus $45,196 for a single big server. If the servers are running mission-critical apps and you want failover capacity, you’ll need two big servers for $90,392, rather than nine small ones for $11,511.
If you do need failover, you’ll need premium virtualization software in addition to the failover software, which is a considerable expense. With hardware and software factored in, eight virtual servers could be $30,000 to $50,000 more expensive. On the other side of the balance sheet, a virtualized infrastructure can be more flexible and easier to administer, since all eight virtual servers, backups, and failover can be managed from a single console.
However, the management savings is not necessarily a lock. If you set up eight single-purpose servers (an app server, mail server, Web server, SQL server, etc.) without changing the configurations, virtualization’s advantage drops. The initial setup of eight virtual systems versus eight physical systems might be easier, but each server needs to be configured and maintained, and this isn’t any easier on one big box than on eight little ones. In a development or testing environment, where you might need a different group of servers every week, there’s a huge advantage to a virtualized environment, but this is a relatively small percentage of the overall number of servers out there.
Why do so many companies adopt virtualization if it costs more than separate physical servers and doesn’t necessarily yield administrative cost savings? First, it’s the in thing at the moment, just as outsourcing was a couple of years ago. Second, if you have a large number of servers that tend to be loaded at different times during the day, you can get away with more virtual servers on a single box. If you can get 16 virtual servers running on the big box, the cost differential drops a lot, and the savings in power is notable as well. Unfortunately, several recent surveys have shown that people tend to overestimate the number of virtual servers they can run on a single system, so servers end up underutilized.
This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t consider virtualization, but you should look carefully at the numbers and run a test bed before committing to the idea.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR. Logan Harbaugh is a freelance reviewer, network systems analyst and consultant, specializing in reviews of network hardware and software, including network operating systems, clustering, load balancing, network-attached storage and storage area networks, traffic simulation, network management and server hardware.
This was last published in October 2009
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Dental braces are devices used to align, straighten and correctly position teeth by exerting steady pressure over a period of time, usually one to three years. Braces typically consist of brackets (bonded to the teeth), bands and wires.
Related articles: Dental Veneers. Retainers. Dental Implants. Straightening Teeth. Teeth Cleaning. Teeth Whitening
What should be included:
Shopping for braces:
Material on this page is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Always consult your physician or pharmacist regarding medications or medical procedures.
San Francisco is one of the few places in the world people can ride on a national historic landmark. The cable cars are the world’s last permanently operational manually operated cable car system, in the U.S. sense of a tramway whose cars are pulled along by cables embedded in the street.
Ever ride a national landmark? It’s being done every day in San Francisco. The City’s right-out-of-the-Smithsonian cable cars were named a national historic landmark in 1964. Refurbished and equipped with new tracks, cables, turnarounds and cable propulsion machinery, they operate as much as they did on August 2, 1873 when Andrew S. Hallidie guided the first car down the Clay Street grade.
The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) runs three cable car lines. These historic vehicles are not self-powered; rather they move using a mechanism that grips cables that run beneath San Francisco’s streets.
The three cable lines are:
Multiple Muni, bus and BART lines intersect with the cable car lines.
For information, routes and schedules, please visit the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency or call 415.673.6864. Please visit BART for information on their lines
Get more information on the neighborhoods here .
9.7 million people take a nine mile per hour ride on them each year.
Movies that included the cable cars:
Posted on: May 20, 2015
The advantage to purchasing a mobile home is clear: price. According to a recent study, the cost to build a manufactured home is about 10 to 20 percent less than building a conventional “stick-built” home. That can add up to quite a lot of money.
In addition, mobile homes, also known as manufactured homes, have come a long way, and in many cases are hard to tell apart from a traditional home in appearance and quality. The popularity of manufactured homes is demonstrated by the fact that about 10% of all new homes are manufactured homes.
The first thing to do is make sure your lender will approve a VA loan on a manufactured home. Some VA lenders will only approve standard stick-built homes.
Once you find a lender, get pre-approved for the loan. Keep in mind that it’s harder to obtain a VA loan approval for a manufactured home than it is for a conventional home, especially if you have a low credit score. This is because default rates are higher on manufactured homes than with stick-built homes, so the VA is not as lenient on credit guidelines.
Another factor that’s different is the loan term. According to VA, the maximum term for a manufactured home with the land is 25 years. Because 30-year terms are not available for manufactured homes, your monthly payment may be slightly higher. Shorter loan terms require higher monthly payments.
As far as the property itself, there are a few requirements a manufactured home has to meet to be eligible for VA financing according to the VA lender’s handbook. The home must:
You can use a VA purchase or refinance loan in these situations:
Each lender is a little different and may not participate in all these types of VA loans.
It’s possible for manufactured homes to be classified as a vehicle, or personal property, instead of real property. When the home is transported to the site, it needs a vehicle’s license to travel upon public roads, much like a travel trailer would.
When the manufactured home is placed on the lot, however, the owner should do a “title elimination” (although not all manufactured home owners do this). Having the title eliminated changes the legal status of the manufactured home from a vehicle to real property.
If you come across a manufactured home that you are interested in, have your real estate agent or loan officer check that the title has been eliminated and the property and home are registered in the county’s records as real estate.
Many Veterans wonder if they can buy a mobile home within a park or community where they rent the land. But VA loans do not allow this. You have to own or be purchasing the lot as well as the mobile home to be eligible for a VA loan.
According to the VA lender’s handbook, the manufactured home can’t simply be left on the wheels it was transported on. It must be placed on a permanent foundation.
A foundation not only supports the weight of the home, but also helps the structure withstand strong wind. Without a good foundation, the home could topple. In some areas of the country, VA even requires hurricane ties to be installed on the home per local code.
If the appraiser has any doubts about the acceptability of the foundation, a certified foundation engineer may be required to make a final determination.
According to the VA handbook, the manufactured home must be at least 10 feet wide and 400 square feet if a single wide, or 20 feet wide and 700 square feet if a double wide to be eligible for financing. There is no age restriction for the manufactured home.
Beyond manufactured home-specific requirements, VA sets forth general Minimum Property Requirements for any home that is financed with a VA loan. The overall goal of MPRs is to ensure that the veteran is buying a home that is livable and free from major defects. See our in-depth article on VA MPRs.
Counties, cities, and states have building codes that all structures must adhere to. For example, a county may require a certain amount of insulation in the home, or various standards for electrical wiring. The manufactured home will have to adhere to these standards as well.
Property zoning also must be followed. For example, a certain county may have a downtown area, commercial areas, suburbs, and undeveloped forest. The manufactured home will have to be placed on a residential lot, and must not violate any zoning restrictions.
A manufactured home that is not yet delivered to the site or permanently affixed is considered “proposed or under construction.” In this case, proposed installation plans and drawings will need to be submitted to the lender, according to the VA lender s handbook.
If any modifications to the manufacturer’s installation instructions are planned, those need to be submitted to the lender as well.
As with all VA loan types, make sure your VA lender can approve this type of financing.
Some lenders will allow you to refinance a manufactured home with a VA streamline (IRRRL). The home would need to have a VA loan on it currently. Check with your lender whether they allow this type of loan, and see our VA streamline refinance page to learn about general qualifications.
Only you, the home buyer, can determine whether a manufactured home works for your situation. For many, it’s a great way to purchase a quality home for 10 to 20 percent less than a standard home. Talk with our mortgage professionals to see if you qualify for a VA manufactured home loan.
VA Home Loan Programs
For veterans who want to refinance their homes. Percentage rates are the lowest in decades.
For veterans who want to refinance and get additional cash-out of their home.
For veterans who want to buy a new home. VA loans require No down-payment.
At a glance, here s what you need to know:
() The average cost to dry out a home is $2,700 (this doesn t include any reconstruction efforts such as replacing floors that were torn out, drywall, etc.)
() The average water damage insurance claim is $7,500 (including drying and reconstruction).
() The price per square foot to cleanup and dry out a home is:
Read further to see what category your loss is!
() All restoration companies charge the same rates. The total cost of the job is ultimately determined by your insurance adjuster. Even if you aren t filing a claim, we all have to use the exact same software to estimate the loss.
Water restoration services are not cheap. Yet water damage repair costs are considerably less expensive than the total replacement cost of structures and items irreparably damaged by leaks and floods.
Between 2007 and 2009, homeowners suffered approximately $9.1 billion in property losses associated with water damage. That was almost 25 percent of total homeowner property losses sustained during that same period. Experts agree that water damage remediation services can save home and business owners between 15 and 40 percent of the costs associated with property loss due to water damage.
A number of factors influence water damage repair costs. First and foremost is the type of water that caused the damage. Water restoration experts identify three types of water:
Clean water: Clean water is rain water that comes from a window or water that comes from a tap that was accidentally left open. Clean water poses no threats to health.
Grey water: Grey water is water that is discharged from major appliances like dishwashers and washing machines. Grey water contains chemical and biological pollutants that can cause illness.
Black water: Black water is sewage water or flood water from ground sources such as overflowing rivers and streams. Black water constitutes an extreme health risk.
Water damage costs will be higher when technicians are dealing with damage caused by grey or black water because more stringent disinfection processes must be put into place, and the technicians themselves are facing a greater risk to their own health.
The Extent of the Damage
The larger the affected area, the higher the water damage repair cost. Most water restoration repair companies base their initial estimates on the square footage of the area they will be working to restore. Similarly, the extent of the damage will have an effect on the project costs. Restoring a carpet that has sustained clean water damage will cost less than restoring a water damaged wall that already shows signs of dry rot and mold infestation.
As we outlined above, there are some nationwide average figures that should at least give you a ballpark at this point in your journey. It s important to understand a couple of things regarding the figures below, though:
First, these numbers just represent the cost of drying the water damage, not doing the actual repairs. Second, these numbers assume the loss just occurred and that it hasn t been sitting for a period of time. If it s the case you had a basement flood and the area has been wet for days, the costs are going to go up because the water has had time to become trapped in surfaces and will be much more difficult to dry. It can also be the case that if the area sits wet for over 48 hours, mold growth will occur. Again, you re then looking at a significantly more expensive price per square foot to cleanup water damage.
Often times people call us and want to know how much the entire project is going to cost on a price per square foot basis. If you re in the same boat, and want to know what that will be, let us save you a phone call and say this:
It is impossible to give you any sort of cost per square foot for repairing water damage without seeing the actual loss.
Why? Well, as we mentioned above, every water damage company charges the same rates. That s true because we have all had to become compliant with a system called Xactimate, an estimating software that insurers and mitigation companies have adopted. In Xactimate, we essentially put in a bunch of data .what surface type was affected, how many linear square feet of baseboard, how many square feet of carpet, what type of carpet, etc. But the variance in cost between these data entries can be dramatic. For instance, there are 6 different inputs for carpet, with a range in cost from $1 to up to $6 or $7 per square foot. So any guess on our part regarding the cost to replace the carpet, should that be necessary, is worthless until we can actually see the carpet and determine what type of carpet it actual is. And that goes for every single area in your home that got water damage. While drying costs are some what uniform, estimating the cost of replacing and repairing areas that got wet is a completely different ballgame.
Want to know how we go about calculating what to charge to cleanup water damage on your property? Watch this 1 minute video!
Depending upon the type of homeowner s insurance policy you have, insurance will often cover at least part of the costs of water damage restoration even if it does not reimburse you for the cost of the actual repair. Much depends upon the exact wording of the policy, and whether or not the homeowner or members of his or her household can be said to be culpable for the events that led to the water damage.
If you ve experienced a water loss, please call now for a free quote fast response anywhere in the United States!
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With the energy, care, time and resources you’ve put in, insurance for your business (and getting it right) will be a top priority. As specialists in insurance for small business, we understand that your requirements are unique and that the types of business insurance on offer can be confusing. So to help you decide, we’ve designed a form that’ll help you compare business insurance quotes tailored to your needs, choosing from a range of covers including public liability and employers’ liability. To get started, click below and get your commercial insurance quotes now.
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Selling products online? We can now cover your online trade, with online retailers’ insurance built for businesses that sell on the web. We offer excellent value and extensive cover, with stock insurance part of the package. Whether you’re a home-based business or high street retailer, our online retail insurance offers a tailored solution.
Business insurance refers to a range of covers that protect businesses against losses suffered during the course of normal activities, particularly in the face of a compensation claim. Different covers look after different risks, such as legal liability, property damage and employee-related issues.
You can tailor your business insurance quote to your own individual needs by including covers such as:
You can easily combine the covers that best suit your own requirements in one single policy and compare quotes from our panel of leading insurers. It’s quick and simple: one policy, one premium, one renewal date, and one set of documents.
A tailored business insurance policy will help you safeguard your financial future. Our consultant Ellie explains your legal responsibilities and why most companies, professionals, and small businesses need insurance.
Public liability insurance is a key cover for many businesses, small and large, as it can protect you if someone is injured or their property is damaged because of your business. Simply Business offers between £1 million and £5 million in cover, to protect you against this cost.
If you have employees, contractors, casual workers or temporary staff, you’re required by law to take out employers’ liability insurance. It’ll cover claims from employees who’ve been injured or become seriously ill as a result of working for you.
Professional indemnity insurance is a vital consideration for all businesses that give advice or offer professional services to other businesses. It covers you in the event that you give faulty advice that causes financial loss to a client.
We lead in small business insurance, and our partners over at Aldermore Bank are the experts in business financing. Together, we’re able to offer clever solutions for factoring, invoice discounting and other boosts to your business development. Take a look at our finance section for all things cashflow.
If you employ people, you’re legally obliged to take out employers’ liability insurance. Most businesses aren’t required to take out any other cover, meaning it’s up to you to decide what’s sensible for your line of work. However, business insurance is one of the most effective ways to maintain a stable, safe workplace and income stream. Here are a few reasons why: