Sunday, June 16, 2013

# al magrabi doha # al magrabi eye doha

Doha Review: Al Magrabi Eye, Ear and Dental Care Part II


After much time spent on Google search for LASIK and its affiliated eye surgeries in Doha and getting basically no reliable results I decided to throw in the towel and experience it myself

The first thing I did was to list down the hospitals that does LASIK for the longest period of time since its establishment in Doha. I came up with Al Magrabi, El Amadi and Al Ahli. So I called them up to fix an appointment. Al Magrabi made a good impression with their phone service and the doctors' resume looked impressive on their site. El Amadi's phone operators were downright rude and hung up on me 3 times. When I called back later, much fuming did a Filipino came over the phone and explained that they didn't accept appointments-rather a walk in. But on the bright side, their optometrist has had 30 years of experience with eye care. So I skipped El Amadi and didn't bother with Al Alhi and decided to go with Al Magrabi

At my first appointment, after presenting the required documents of an expat (my passport was with my husband's runner who was getting my residency permit done) so all I presented was my Insurance card. They then issued me a membership/appointment card. By the way, eye care is on the first floor of Magrabi. The pharmacy and eye care shop is on the ground floor next to the reception desk. Don't bother with the reception desk on the ground floor, they're always tied up with people and are unhelpful so just take the lift to 1st floor and get the receptionist there to do your paperwork/approval

Among the first things they did was to get visual acuity tests done for my eyes, this was probably to measure the sharpness of my current vision. I had to read off letters from a chart mounted on a wall in front of me and to read again with a spoon-like device (literately wrapped with an ice-cream stick) alternatively covering one eye at a time. Then I had the cover test where both my eyes were subjected to stare at a faraway white-picketed house. Then I had to go to another waiting room and wait for my turn to see the doctor. Oh, I almost forgot. When you call these hospitals, always check their websites for the doctors they have and hear whom they recommend for you. If who you want is not whom they assign to your case then make a suggestion. What I did was to ask right away for the doctor whom is best in performing LASIK surgeries. I requested for another doctor senior doctor but was recommended for Dr Ahmed Elantably instead. Upon further checking I found out that he does LASIK for Magrabi with the senior doctor in presence. As I sat in the good doctor's office he switched off the fluorescent lights did some "follow the light" test (also known as retinoscopy), to which he concluded that my eyes were dry but didn't give me a direct answer to my queries of LASIK, he said to wait until my next appointment which will test the thickness of my cornea and then he will advise accordingly. I guess he didn't want to worry me but all I wanted was answers to generic-pre-LASIK-questions. I was sent back home; with more questions than I had when I came in


At the second appointment, after my insurance approval had gone thru, I had two more tests to go thru. The first was staring into this device with rings shooting blue lights into my eyes. Later when I asked the technician she said that it was a topography machine. Once I was done with that I had to wait for my second test with the anesthetist for a corneal pachymetry, which is to measure the thickness of my cornea if it’s suitable for LASIK. First he does the sit-lamp examination followed by a drop of anesthesia on both my eyes which totally numb them so he could use the pen-like device to measure the corneal thickness.

Finally I was called into Dr Ahmed's office and he starts off with the good news that is my cornea is about 5mm thick which makes it OK to do LASIK. On the other hand my eyes were very dry, and the condition is moderate-severe. He stated the pros and cons before and after the surgery, he would be doing intra-LASIK instead of LASIK and the only difference is that this intra surgery is done entirely by a machine with doctors' presence. Also, it takes a much shorter time to recover from this type of LASIK. He gave me a poorly printed piece of paper with prior and after care of the eyes and it was something I already knew. When I asked his medical opinion if I should go for the surgery he was very inconclusive about stating his opinion. However, he did mention that my eyes will be much drier after the surgery but eventually it will go back to my current state after 6 months. After I agreed for the LASIK he does a retinoscopy and a refraction test to get the most accurate and final eyes readings after surgery.





What the doctor didn't explain but my cousin did (he is newly minted ophthalmologist back in Malaysia) was the cornea is like a hill, it has its uphill and downhill. The area in red is the uneven grounds, also known as hot area. The area in blue is the cold area where vision is correct. During LASIK procedure when the flap is pulled back the laser machine will aim to shoot more into the red and yellow "hot" area to even the "hill"

All said and done I was ushered to the Administrator's office but he was away, so I requested them to get an approval for LASIK from my insurance provider and to quote me the price when the admin is back. After 2 days they call me back to inform that the procedure will be a pay-and-claim process; at a cost of 15,000 riyals which is the maximum amount my insurance provider is charging for LASIK procedures

Here's a total breakdown of the payments so far with Al Magrabi, you will find their contact numbers in the receipts as well





I sat down and played the scenario over and over in my mind and came to the conclusion that I should probably try out the "posher" hospital; Al Ahli. Surprise is probably the best word to describe what I felt when I checked their doctors' profile. All their doctors are foreigners from the West and East, their nurses are English speaking Indians and they had higher percentage of positive reviews in QatarLiving. Al Ahli is known to be pricey so I booked myself an appointment with their Prof in Ophthalmology, he's the only ICO certified in Qatar (this means if you're a doctor in Qatar sitting for your opto/eye specialist exam, he will be the judge) He must be either pretty booked or on holidays because the only date I could get with him is 23rd June. Till then~

10 comments:

  1. Very informative blog. Thanks! :)

    I would like to ask if you continue your appointment to Al Ahli? How much it cost?

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    Replies
    1. i have no idea how much everything costs they never show me the bills the only thing i get to see is the pre-approved 500 riyals to see a doctor for every visit

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  2. May I ask, how to know a person has Diabetic Retinopathy symptom?? Is normal Optometrist can check??

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  3. Yes, you can go to your Optometrist for check up, and usually they will advice you a specialist after that.

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  4. Great advice! I am staying at PJ Uptown Damansara, so every year, i will just go to Malaya Optical for eye exam. recently annual sales, discount up to 90% for Ray-ban wayfarer.

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  5. What is the term of Al Magrabi, El Amadi and Al Ahli? is it only for muslim can be members? the ordinary people cannot entitle for this eye exam??

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    Replies
    1. anyone can go for the eye exam provided you have money or insurance coverage

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  6. My two eyes are not equal so it's possible for lasik surgery? My Left eye ( - 10 ) and the right eye ( - 11.5 ). Please give me some information about it.

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  7. My two eyes are not equal so it's possible for lasik surgery? My Left eye ( - 10 ) and the right eye ( - 11.5 ). Please give me some information about it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. both my eyes have different reading, and i have astimagtism. so yes, you can get lasik with different eye readings on both your eyes

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