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Hit in eye with 1000mw 445nm blue laser

aryntha

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No real solace, but -- let us know what happens... From what you say, it seems like it was kind of an oblique hit which means maybe it's going to be more of a peripheral issue, the edge of the fovea not the center of it.

Either way I hope you are reading this because any swelling that follows (and there can be swelling -- severe) could make things worse, and, i'm going to say it: lead to complete vision loss or loss of that eye, if the inflammation gets too intense. This is why it's important to get to the ER so they can get you on corticosteroids (prednisone or the like) to keep that from happening.

Even if it hit a 'less important' part of the eye, it could progress like this. If you start to feel pain or pressure in that eye, it means that it is beginning to swell and inflame, and you need to be to the ER within the hour. Even if it doesn't hurt "now" it could damage your whole eye if you wait. Versus showing up at the ER and they give you a bitter tasting pill or a quick steroid shot that saves your eye.

I know the temptation to 'sleep on it' and see if it'll be gone in the morning, but this isn't worth that. Hopefully you're reading this and doing something about it -- it's about all we can do from our end at this point. (I know from experience due to anaphylactic episodes lately how much of a temptation it is to 'man up' and 'ride it out' -- I've had to force myself, at 3am, to wake people up and say 'look i know its 3am and its -6'F but I need to be driven to the hospital NOW." And it sucked. But it also probably saved my life. This isn't life threatening, but it is eye-threatening, so, please, if you're reading this; Stand up, walk to someone who can help, and do it. Ignore the reservations, and go through the functions. You'll be thankful later.)


... Hindsight means nothing here, and I'm not admoninshing the OP since he paid for his mistake and doesn't need to be lectured but, personally, and maybe other people would concur:


1) When "aligning" Class 4 laser ... OD3 or better. I've had enough near misses with OD3+ on to scare the hell out of me. They've saved my ass.

2) Liquid sky with 1W? I'm just not sure the risk is worth the reward there.

3) Check the OD on your eyewear. Lasers have progressed, even in the 2 years since I got a lot of my goggles. With the new Mitsubishi 500+w 638s, I've realized that my red OD 1.5's are no longer really suitable and I have to pony up for something a bit more significant in the red range.

4) Yeah. We all want to see the effect WITHOUT the eyewear on. Of course. But in a situation like this, it's like pre-flight with a plane. Mental checklist. (Even seasoned pilots still do their checklists, which they've done 1000+ times before... 'Pros' dont skip it.) "Is everything secured." / "Am I BEHIND any poossible danger of reflection"... Then, you can observe.

Here, a 'round' laser 'rolled' and hit the OP, completely unsuspecting. This is why even if you're "really careful", bad things can happen. Nobody plans to have an accident. As time goes on a post like this can serve as a reminder for us to not be so lax, to not be so cocky, and to straighten up and fly right.

As i'm writing this I have a 27mW HeNe running across the room. I realized how completely lax i've become about something like this. When in reality, 27mW could absolutely cause permanent damage, no questions asked. I see people who treat 50mW or 100mW like it's harmless. It isn't. In 2006 we'd all be wowing about 80mW of 532, and showing respect for it. Now, 200mW barely gets us out of bed in the morning. Our perspectives have changed but unfortunately the temperature at which tissue scars has not, at all.

I hope somehow, to hear an update from the OP, that because of the angle, or the motion (a sweep), or the timing -- that his vision is OK. I really hope that's the outcome. Or if there is damage, that it's really minor and peripheral. We're REALLY lucky we haven't seen more accidents like this because a lot of folks actually do take precautions. But I hate to say it, I think every once in a while everyone needs a bit of a wakeup call like this.

I know it's helped me. It's certainly "rebooted" my goggle and precautionary habits... so for what its' worth, Xoul, as empty as it may be -- thank you for posting this, and *please* let us know the outcome... I know I'm hoping it's going to be OK.
 
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eytyxhs

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OMG!!!

NEVER PLAY WITH LASERS WITHOUT SAFETY GOOGLES!

IF you want I can sent you the Googles for free. But you'll use them every time!

I hope you are ok! :(
 

Guyfromhe

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I hope all is OK with your eyes. 1W of power is A LOT to dump into your eye even for a fraction of a second.

That's for sure a lot more power than you need for the effect you are trying to produce in a home setting. Many mid range show lasers only total 1W of combined power (far less than 1W per laser color).

I am more into the projection side so I understand the lack of goggles while operating, however this is one of the reasons we use square lasers mounted on heavy surfaces, so they don't leave where we put them.

When you are setting up or aligning your equipment however there is no excuse to not wear goggles. It's only once your hardware is stable and secure and you have confirmed the area is safe of reflections that you can take your glasses off to enjoy the show.
 

xoul

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Man, what a hell of a night.

So I did go to the ER, having to drive myself since i didn't have anyone i knew that could take me. Driving with one eye was a new experience in itself. Also it was raining which just further complicated things. I got there, about 5 hours later i saw the doc, he said since this wasn't his specialty he wanted me to go to the eye foundation hospital. Drive 30 more minutes in the rain to the eye foundation hospiltal, about an hour later i saw their doc that looked into the eye and said he saw where there was blood covering the retna, and he thinks that is all that is preventing me from seeing at this point. He believes it "could" clear up within a matter of a month or so, but its too early to tell right now. He wanted me to come back the next day to see a retna specialist at the same hospital, so that's where I stand now.

I think i can see things some better though the "dot" today, it's gone from dark red to an orangish color, allowing a bit more light to come through that yesterday. It's similar to looking at blood through a glass slide under a microscope, except it's blurry and out of focus.

Appreciate the support from everyone. I'll report back what happens after the retna specialist visit, for those that may be interested.
 

bennett326

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im glad you took the advice and went last nigh good luck
 

InfinitusEquitas

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Hope things turn out ok, and by some miracle there is no permanent damage.

Please keep us posted on your progress.
 

Guyfromhe

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Man, what a hell of a night.

So I did go to the ER, having to drive myself since i didn't have anyone i knew that could take me. Driving with one eye was a new experience in itself. Also it was raining which just further complicated things. I got there, about 5 hours later i saw the doc, he said since this wasn't his specialty he wanted me to go to the eye foundation hospital. Drive 30 more minutes in the rain to the eye foundation hospiltal, about an hour later i saw their doc that looked into the eye and said he saw where there was blood covering the retna, and he thinks that is all that is preventing me from seeing at this point. He believes it "could" clear up within a matter of a month or so, but its too early to tell right now. He wanted me to come back the next day to see a retna specialist at the same hospital, so that's where I stand now.

I think i can see things some better though the "dot" today, it's gone from dark red to an orangish color, allowing a bit more light to come through that yesterday. It's similar to looking at blood through a glass slide under a microscope, except it's blurry and out of focus.

Appreciate the support from everyone. I'll report back what happens after the retna specialist visit, for those that may be interested.
Yikes that sounds bad... Hopefully the specialist can give you some good news... It will fade over time in any case but don't be surprised if you have some permanent damage.
 

magmabeam

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Scary thread. Whenever I am messing with optics/effects with a laser beam I always wear goggles then peak over when it is certainly safe. Even then I feel very uncomfortable.

If you had good vision in that eye, it is unlikely to be as good again for many many months.

To put things in perspective, here is a report about someone being hit with a 150mw green. His eye was reduced to 20/50, had internal bleeding and scarring. Though it is reported to have healed up over time. Kids Playing With Laser Pointers May Be Aiming for Eye Trouble
 

qumefox

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There's another 'lesson' to be learned from this as well other than just 'always use protective eye wear'. And that's 'never lay a laser that's on on an unstable surface and walk away. Most people don't think about not doing this either.
 

ShortyInCanada

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Serious thread about safety issues and the results from not following proper safety procedures.
An unfortunate example that should be noted by everyone wanting a "high power laser".

From your last report you may be lucky to have only a small permanent injury.
I really hope you will get better soon and when you get to be 50, that it doesn't make your vision noticeably bad.
Because it really sucks !
 

SOG

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Man, what a hell of a night.

So I did go to the ER, having to drive myself since i didn't have anyone i knew that could take me. Driving with one eye was a new experience in itself. Also it was raining which just further complicated things. I got there, about 5 hours later i saw the doc, he said since this wasn't his specialty he wanted me to go to the eye foundation hospital. Drive 30 more minutes in the rain to the eye foundation hospiltal, about an hour later i saw their doc that looked into the eye and said he saw where there was blood covering the retna, and he thinks that is all that is preventing me from seeing at this point. He believes it "could" clear up within a matter of a month or so, but its too early to tell right now. He wanted me to come back the next day to see a retna specialist at the same hospital, so that's where I stand now.

I think i can see things some better though the "dot" today, it's gone from dark red to an orangish color, allowing a bit more light to come through that yesterday. It's similar to looking at blood through a glass slide under a microscope, except it's blurry and out of focus.

Appreciate the support from everyone. I'll report back what happens after the retna specialist visit, for those that may be interested.

I have been following your post too, I am glad the doctor said it could becomes clear later, from your case, i am sure the laser fires into your eyes for less than a sec as it's only falling...

Anyway, this is a good case for all of us... I will get one more laser goggle too, the current one I have will be given to my brother later this week.
 

xoul

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Just got back a while ago from the retina specialist. He confirmed he could see blood covering over the retina. He said he couldn't see any other damage right now. He said that the blood could clear up on its own, but its not a good idea to try to let the white/red blood cells pass through the retina using the natural process.

So the bottom line is that I'm having surgery next Tuesday to try to remove the blood. Hopefully that will go well, but it will be a little while after surgery before we know anything, as that eye will be completely useless for the first few weeks. I'll let you guys know how that goes.

And just to show that I'm not going to let a little something like blindness in one eye keep me down, I finished the contraption that started this whole mess, except this time using a <100mW greenie instead. :D See results:
 

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Lase

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I'm glad to hear that it doesn't seem to be any permanent damage. But you will still have to wait to see what they say after your surgery.

This is a wake up call to me as I have been very lax about eye safety with lasers.

+1 for sharing the experience and taking everyones advice quickly. You may have saved your eye.

Lase
 

Haloid95

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Glad to see that you hopefully will be ok. Good luck on the surgery, and already using Lasers again after that lol. I would stay away at least until the surgery :p.
 

Wolfman29

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Yup. Been following this too. I'm going to go purchase some better eyewear now! I used to just use my welding goggles where anything might directly reflect back at me, and never used anything unless there was a chance of reflection... any recommendations for 405nm-550nm goggles that are decent? Looking for O.D. ~4 maybe?
 

InfinitusEquitas

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Yup. Been following this too. I'm going to go purchase some better eyewear now! I used to just use my welding goggles where anything might directly reflect back at me, and never used anything unless there was a chance of reflection... any recommendations for 405nm-550nm goggles that are decent? Looking for O.D. ~4 maybe?
Check my signature. The ones from survival are fine, but if you want to be super safe go with OEM.

Most of the time I end up using the survivor goggles since they aren't as tight on my oversize head, and have better vlt. Of course, they aren't certified, and they aren't rated to have as high of an OD.
 







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