UCLA freshman forward Reeves Nelson had laser retinopexy on his left eye today to repair a slight tear in his retina. The surgery was done at UCLA’s world-renowned Jules Stein Eye Institute by Dr. Steven Schwartz.
He did not practice today and is not slated to practice tomorrow. He will be revaluated on Wednesday for Thursday’s game against Oregon State (Feb. 25).
“The retinal tear was very far away from his central and meaningful peripheral vision and should not affect his ability to see the court,” Dr. Schwartz said. “He is an extremely tough kid and tolerated the procedure extremely well without anaesthesia.”
Dr. Schwartz said that he has consulted with Los Angeles Lakers’ athletic trainer, Gary Vitti, who will assist with protective eyewear, the same worn by James Worthy.
The tear had a small amount of blood around it, indicating it was a recent injury.
Nelson took a hard face-first fall after a slam dunk in the first half of the Bruins’ game at Washington State last Thursday (Feb. 18). He sustained a two-inch cut above his right eye, requiring 15 stitches. He never returned to the game. He started two nights later when UCLA visited the University of Washington.
Upon his return, Nelson was revaluated by UCLA team physician, Dr. John DiFiori, and after that consultation, Dr. DiFiori referred him to Dr. Schwartz