A man whose eyesight was deteriorating so quickly that he feared he would no longer be able to take his grandchildren out on trips, has undergone a "life changing" operation.

During National Eye Health Week 2017, Dave Roscoe, A 67-year-old fitness fanatic from Chelmsford, has decided to share his story.

Having suffered from extreme short-sightedness, glaucoma and aged-related cataracts, Mr Roscoe’s vision had deteriorated so drastically that he was waiting for the day that the optician would tell him he should no longer drive.

Despite being a self-proclaimed “action man” his weak vision was also having an effect on his confidence on the road, in public spaces, at home and at his beloved gym.

Mr Roscoe said: “My biggest passion in life is my family and the grandchildren and the thought that I may not be able to take them out and about in my car any longer was too much to bear."

“Any grandparent will tell you how special it is to spend time with the kids and treat them and if I had ignored how badly my eyes were getting I could have lost that pleasure forever.

“My eyes were causing me problems in so many areas of my life and my vision was getting worse and worse and something had to be done, quickly.”

With waiting lists for non-urgent operations the highest they have been for ten years in England, patients may currently have to wait more than 18 weeks to get treatment for cataracts on the NHS.

Mr Roscoe – who worked for Marconi in Chelmsford for more than 40 years – chose to book an operation at The Chelmsford Private Day Surgery Hospital, in New London Road, who saw him within one week and completed with surgery within a month.

Mr Petros Andreou, Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon at The Chelmsford, said: "Cataracts are a common condition which has a severe affect upon vision, particularly among people over 65 years of age, but they can affect almost anyone at any time. Cataracts can also affect their independence and driving ability.

"The procedure will take in the region of 10 minutes and a patient will be able to return home the same day.

"Clearly, this operation has changed Mr Roscoe's vision to the extent that it has improved his overall quality of life and that is the case for many people who choose to do it. Sometimes after the operation vision can be clearer without glasses for distance and driving too. “

In March this year NHS England’s chief executive, Simon Stevens, announced that the NHS is significantly relaxing the requirement on hospitals to treat, within 18 weeks, 92 per cent of all patients in England who are waiting for a hip or knee replacement, cataract removal, hernia repair or other non-urgent operations.

This means the wait for a cataract operation – to tackle a degenerative condition – could be more than four and a half months for patients in some hospitals across the country.

It is estimated that 30 per cent of people aged 65 years or older have a visually impairing cataract in one or both eyes and around 330,000 cataract operations are performed each year in England alone.

For more information about cataract operations at The Chelmsford Private Day Surgery Hospital, you can visit: https://www.thechelmsford.co.uk/services/cataract-surgery