Macular Society

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COSLAD profile image


I have been having eye Injection since 2018.

I had many experiences with floating images, black circle and the pains during the procedure and after. I have had some painless injections due to the experience of the personnel involved. I have also have it rough with others but have not seen anything or experienced any like my last injection that was administered 23 April, 2021.

The person that administered the injection covered my face with the sticky sterilised cover and was asking me how many fingers that I can see. I have to tell him that I can see through the cover. He then opened it up something he ought to do first. He then started poking my eyes with cotton bud after the clamp was in place. I only knew he was using cotton bud for the probing because he kept on telling me it is a cotton bud that he is using and that I should only felt the pressure. This is very strange thing that I never witnessed. Though after aesthetic, they normally press against the eyes to make sure I did not feel pains but pressure of that touch. I never knew it is a cotton bud they used to put the pressure on. On this occasion, the guy kept on poking my eyes that I started counting and praying silently that it will stop.

I experienced massive pains after the injection and more pains later after the anaesthetics wear off. I couldn’t write this yesterday 24 hours after the injection as I can’t open my eyes to light. I am okay today as the pains almost gone and I can also opened up my eyes to watch TV and also use the Dictanote on my screen to write this up.

Can anyone in the house check out my experience and advice if this normal?

I have had over 25 injection since 2018 but have not witnessed this.

Did anyone knows if I can request for a specific doctor to administer my injection?

Please advice

Thank you all

17 Replies

Sorry to hear about this, I too had an awful experience (as in my post). I will be demanding to see my normal doctor in future as he is fantastic and has a totally different procedure, so I don’t see why you can’t ask to see your normal doctor. Surely we can request what we are most comfortable with. Good luck x

AKSOL profile image
AKSOL in reply to sarahc333

Thank you for your reply. I will do same next visit

Having had over 100 injections I can vouch that the cotton bud is often used. Usually they dip it in anesthetic so that it is directly on the place they are putting the injection so you get an extra bit of anesthetic where it is needed.

AKSOL profile image
AKSOL in reply to tallyho

Thanks for your reply. It good to know this.

3furryfiends profile image
3furryfiends in reply to AKSOL

i have had a cotton bud used recently and i was told that this was to apply a spot of iodine before the injection!!- i can vouch that it was iodine as I have developed an allergy to iodine and I was told that they would not be using any!!-i practically jumped out of the chair!!

don't suffer in silence-i would log a formal complaint!! i have had similar experiences and i raised my concerns!! i once had my entire face washed with an iodine swab!! i looked like i was having major surgery!! you must tell otherwise the atrocious service will continue

My last injection four weeks ago was the second most painful one I've had in almost three years. It was carried out by a different injector who I had never seen before. I asked for extra anaesthetic drops (something I always ask for since the first really bad experience where none of the drops worked at all) about two years ago. I got lots of drops but I find that they don't tip you back in the chair far enough for the drops to reach the top of the eyeball and so the drops never seem to go exactly where they are supposed to go no matter how much you blink or roll your eyes. Then, the man carrying out the injection started making my eye vibrate (don't ask what I mean or what he did as I don't have a clue, I could just feel my eye was vibrating and the vision was very weird) - I think he was doing it with a cotton bud, that's the only thing I can think of, but I don't know why. He then proceeded to inject and said "sharp scratch" - that's what was said to me when I felt the first one all the way through which I have mentioned above and a very sharp scratch it was too which got worse as he pushed the needle in. I of course couldn't help but let out a loud moan and then told him that pain wise, it was the second worst injection I'd ever had since the beginning. He looked and sounded surprised and asked if I wanted some anaesthetic put in my eye, but as I told him, what was the point when none of the drops had worked anyway. To be honest, I really don't think he cared or the nurse that was there with him. I will be having words with the ophthalmologist/optometrist who I see before my next injection next week and asking why for one he made my eye vibrate like that and is there any possibility that there was a problem with the anaesthetic drops.

AKSOL profile image
AKSOL in reply to springcross

Thanks for your reply. Sorry to hear about your awful experience too. I hope your future treatments will be devoid of the pains.

springcross profile image
springcross in reply to AKSOL

Thanks, yours too. x

Shimano profile image
Shimano in reply to springcross

Hi springcross. Do I ever relate to the horror of your injection. All mine except two have been like that. Aneasthetic drops do not work At all for me and now I wonder if it is partly the reason you give about them not reaching the upper eye. I think it was you who gave me the tip re AnAthestic injections which also never worked. I took your tip of insisting that the doc should wait At least 5 mins for the injection to work. And it worked! Not pain free by any means but not totally horrendous either. Many thanks for your accumulated wisdom.

springcross profile image
springcross in reply to Shimano

Hi Shimano, I hope you are well. I don't think it was me who gave you the tip about anaesthetic injections - if I did then I had read it on someone else's post. What a shame it didn't work for you, I know how you struggle with the pain. I am going to ask next time if they will wait before giving me the injection to give the anaesthetic drops time to work although I might not get the answer I am hoping for but will first speak to the ophthalmologist/optometrist. I have on several occasions not felt any numbing until I am actually walking out of the hospital to get in the car yet I have read on others posts that they have the drops inserted and then they have to go wait in another area for a certain amount of time to give the drops time to work (they are probably patients in the USA). It's all so odd that there isn't one set of procedures for everyone. All the best to you. x

Shimano profile image
Shimano in reply to springcross

I had the drops and then, in addition, an injection of anaethestic into the eye. This was tried before with no success until I asked them to wait five minutes before the eylea injection to give it time to work. Just hope it works next time. It does at least reduce the pain.

Sounds truly awful and I can relate to your experience. See my reply to springcross. It is total lottery As to wether you get a nightmare injector. Refuse to have this one again. If you have experience of a good injector ask if you can have them again. No harm in asking!!! Good luck. What puzzles me is the number of people who only ever feel a sense of pressure during the injection. Is there such a thing as a super sensitive eyeball do you think.

Rosalyn-helpline profile image


I am checking up on this for you.

Kind regards,

Macular Society

Tel 0300 3030111


I am sorry to hear of your painful experience.I am receiving shots once a month for 5 years and have never had a painful experience. Pennsylvania, USA.

My Retinal Dr numbs my eye first with drops, then a painless anesthesia shot. Then the injection. Most times I don’t even feel the pressure.

No tissues or cotton balls are applied to my eyes.

My eye is functional within hours of anesthesia and dilation wearing off.

Find yourself a specialist and never return to the Quack!

~ melene

That sounds absolutely awful. Regarding positioning, at Moorfields they lay you right down on your back so that all anaesthetics and other irrigations spread all over the eye. The clamp is sticky paper but the eye is so well irrigated you don't feel the need to blink. Could you demand this next time?

When I moved to another state, the first retina doctor did not workout for me, so I called and requested a different doctor, within the same group. Much better results.

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