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Dr. A.S. Desai
Dr. A.S. Desai, Ophthalmologist
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 2436
Experience:  MS Ophthalmology with 13 years of surgical expereince
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Hello, I have a question regarding whether or not you think

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I have a question regarding whether or not you think it is necessary to try to find an eye doctor in my area (as I do not have one and have always had good eyesight, currently age 25) for my concern regarding an incident that happened last night while at work. I work at a bar that has a scanner for CA Lottery tickets. I was working by myself and it had gotten pretty busy when a customer wanted to cash her winning tickets, but when I ran the first one through the scanner, it got jammed in the middle, and I was never trained on how to fix that situation, so I was stressfully trying to figure it out myself. Not knowing what I was doing, I accidently lifted the top half of the scanner to where the barcode-reading laser was suddenly directly in my eyes for half a second, and unfortunately, literally only an inch or so away. This surprised me of course, as it was unexpected, but there wasn't any pain-- I just temporarily still saw the flash of the red beams when I blinked. This was in a dim bar, so I didn't notice any real problems seeing, driving home that night, or working at my other job this morning, which is also at a dim bar. However, when I went to drive home during sunset today, I noticed that there seemed to be some sort of vague cloudiness/fog around the brightness of sunset (in addition to the usual annoyance of the blinding sun stuck in your eyes while trying to drive.) It seems as though any bright light (laptop's backlit keyboard, etc.) has a weird glow/blurry haze surrounding it, (not rainbows halos, though, which I've seen around certain lights since age 13 but was told by an Optometrist after running tests that it wasn't glaucoma.) BUT, small letters are still crisp and easy to read, no blurriness there, and there is no pain, stinging or watering in my eyes.

Given these details, my question is if a doctor's visit would be able to tell me if there was any damage from the light/laser, (which seemed oddly thick/large compared to the small/thin lasers I've used at previous stores, if that means anything) and also if you happen to know by law if lasers used by the general public are even allowed to cause accidental damage? (In other words, if this is psychological from me worrying?) And finally, if incidents like this can cause an onset of a problem in time, or if any problems would be experienced right away and not later on.

Thank you!
Hello Jessica,

Thank you for the question.I am Dr.A.S.Desai and I look forward to assisting you .

I guess the retina especially the macula ,which is the centremost part of retina and is responsible for good dayvision and color vision, is fine based on the fact that the near vision is clear and sharp. If at all the laser would have caused any damage it should have affected the macula as it is expected to be hit by light when pupil is constricted ( by reflex your pupils would have got constricted on exposure to the laser light suddenly). The laser used in scanners is class I or class II which are labelled as safe lasers. However to be on the safer side it is recommended that you get a dilated eye exam done by an ophthalmologist so as to verify whether the retina and macula are normal. You can wait for the symptoms to subside by a week or so.If the cloudiness persists even beyond a week then it is better to get the eye examined.

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.Thank you and best wishes.It was a pleasure to have answered this question.Views expressed are for information purpose only and cannot substitute a visit to an ophthalmologist
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