Robert Sohovich is an avid reader, continuously juggling several books at a time. In summer 2017, he tackled the The Last Lion, a 3,000-plus page, three-volume biography of Winston Churchill.
"It was so long the writer died before he finished it," said Mr. Sohovich, referencing William Manchester, the book's author who handed the project off to Paul Reid eight months before his death. "It took me about four-and-a-half months to finish. It wasn't a continuous read but I worked at it pretty well.
"I have multiple titles going at the same time. It's sort of like a buffet - whatever mood I'm in."
As the year progressed, cataracts caused Mr. Sohovich's eyesight to decline. His vision was normal during the day, but at night he saw more halos than a Pink Floyd concert.
"Bright lights were very annoying," he said. "It can be difficult to drive at night because of the oncoming vehicles."
Mr. Sohovich's condition led him to Carolyn Shih, MD, director of clinical research and director of refractive surgery at Northwell Health's Department of Ophthalmology. Dr. Shih identified the cataracts, as well as a condition called Fuch's Dystrophy where the pump cells in his cornea, the "windshield" to his eye were prematurely failing, creating a film and blurry vision. He needed a transplant.
It can be quite stressful to have any surgery, let alone surgery on your eyes. Dr. Shih performed the cataract removal, as well as a Descemet's membrane endothelial keratoplasty (DMEK) - a type of cornea transplant - in March and April. As of early May, Mr. Sohovich's vision was 20/25. He praised Cecilia Francisquini, surgical coordinator, and several others in the Department of Ophthalmology for providing a seamless experience.
"It is absolutely amazing," said Mr. Sohovich, a Flushing native and retired human resources controller for a major media company. "I've worn glasses to correct my vision for 55 years and I no longer need them. It's almost like a miracle."