Rep. Crenshaw Undergoes Successful Eye Surgery, Still Has 'A While to Go' Before Full Recovery


Two weeks after GOP Rep. Dan Crenshaw of Texas divulged he had been given a terrifying prognosis over an upcoming operation to save his eyesight, he offered a hopeful update on Friday after having had surgery.

The former Navy SEAL lost his right eye following injuries sustained after an IED blast in Afghanistan in 2012. Crenshaw has since worn an eye patch, but the roadside attack also damaged his left eye.

“A few days ago, I noticed some dark, blurry spots in my vision, which seemed out of the ordinary,” Crenshaw said in a statement posted on Twitter on April 10. “I went to get this checked out by an ophthalmologist on Thursday and they discovered that my retina was detaching.”

“This is a terrifying prognosis for someone with one eye, and the nature of the injuries that I sustained in Afghanistan,” he added. “Anyone who knows the history of my injuries knows that I don’t have a ‘good eye,’ but half a good eye,” he wrote.

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Two weeks later, Crenshaw shared an update about his post-operation condition in a separate statement posted on Twitter. While Crenshaw is still struggling to see through the eye, the prognosis is much better — leaving the lawmaker hopeful for the future.

“Last week, I had my follow-up visit with my surgeon, which went very well,” he stated. “To our relief, my retina was still in place during my follow-up appointment.”

“I can lift my head up again and no longer have to position myself face-down, which is a relief. This is obviously good news, but it doesn’t mean we are out of the woods yet,” he added.

Due to the nature of the operation, Crenshaw said he could not see well, but signaled that the current state of his vision is hopefully just a side effect of his operation.

“I still cannot see much other than lights and shadows, basically, as I am still in the early stages of my recovery. I am not sure how my vision will be in a few weeks. But I am hopeful and confident it will return to normal,” he stated.

The Texas Republican added that the complex surgery including the use of a “silicone buckle” around his retina, as well as the use of a laser to apply an adhesive. He then divulged another revelation: he must avoid changes in altitude, preventing him from flying, as the procedure left him with a “gas bubble” in his eye.

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“When they did that, they needed to keep my retina in place, which is why they injected a gas bubble into my eye to act as a bandage for my retina and prevent further detaching,” he stated.

“The surgery went very well, thanks to the excellent doctors and nurses at the VA here in Houston, but I still have a while to go until I am fully recovered. I cannot fly on an airplane for at least six weeks because the pressure changes while flying may cause the gas bubble in my eye to expand.”

“That is why I cannot see anything right now and won’t be able to see anything for the next few weeks until the gas bubble dissipates,” Crenshaw added.

He concluded that he still has quite a path in front of him regarding his recovery, but he appeared optimistic.

Crenshaw also said he is doing what work he can, considering his post-operation condition. His offices in both Houston and Washington, D.C. remain open.

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“Thank you and God bless,” he concluded in the update.

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Johnathan Jones has worked as a reporter, an editor, and producer in radio, television and digital media.
Johnathan "Kipp" Jones has worked as an editor and producer in radio and television. He is a proud husband and father.