March 8, 2019

Eye Patient Sees UAMS as Best Choice

Eye patient Clyde Snyder regains his vision

Clyde Snider said he is thrilled by the vision-saving surgery that was performed by UAMS’ Sami Uwaydat, M.D.

When he was 3 years old, Clyde Snider was shot with a BB gun and lost all vision in his right eye. Later, while still a child, he began having problems with the vision in his left eye. And so began a lifelong search to find the best eye care. At age 8, Snider began wearing glasses to address his myopia (nearsightedness), and for decades he also struggled with severe floaters in his left eye.

As an adult, Snider bumped his head and began having additional flashes and floaters. Because he had vision in only one eye, surgery was ruled out. “The floaters were very bothersome,” Snider said. “They started creating more and more problems.”

Snider, who produces radio commercials, began having difficulty using a computer to edit the audio because his eyes often were unable to locate the cursor on the screen. After focusing on one point for a period of time, the floaters would clump together to block his vision, so he would have to look away and then refocus. He lived with these floaters for more than 20 years.

Snider discovered a doctor in Washington who treated floaters using laser surgery, one of only three in the country doing this procedure. The doctor treated about 60 percent of the floaters; the other 40 percent could not be lasered because many were too close to the retina. Snider’s vision improved but then got worse. Since he was still in Washington, Snider went back to the doctor. “He lasered me 600 times, which is the most he had ever done to anyone,” he said.

Snider returned home to Little Rock with some improvement, but then his condition worsened. The deterioration of Snider’s vision interfered with his quality of life, so he came to UAMS to see Sami Uwaydat, M.D., in the Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute. Uwaydat’s exam confirmed that treatment had broken up the floaters into small pieces, but they were beginning to come back together. The exam also showed an area of thinning in the peripheral retina and an epiretinal membrane growing on the macula.

Snider had surgery on June 23 to remove the floaters and the epiretinal membrane, also known as a macular pucker, and laser was applied around the areas of retinal thinning as a preventive measure. After the surgery, Snider’s vision greatly improved, allowing him to return to work and his regular activities with confidence.

“Dr. Sami [Uwaydat] really impressed me. He was ultra attentive to me after the surgery, seeing me every day at first,” Snider said. “He saved me future problems with my retina and did three procedures in one. I am thrilled with the care I’ve had at the UAMS Jones Eye Institute. My vision is improving, and I am seeing better all the time.”