MIAMI, FL – Dr. Henry Flickheimer, an ophthalmology resident, has struggled and coped with a certain intense fear for years. Surprisingly, that fear is the fear of touching or looking at eyeballs, otherwise called ommetaphobia.
“It just became too much for me, I couldn’t take it anymore!” said Flickheimer. “At first I was able to deal with looking at a few eyeballs. I would use a paper bag in between rooms and I would hyperventilate into the bag before seeing the next patient.” Ironically, Flickheimer was accepted to a top-notch program due to his witty sense of humor.
“The guy was a riot,” said residency program director Dr. Brooklyn Meyerton. “He walks in for the interview and when asked about his weaknesses, he said he had a severe case of ommetaphobia. Freakin’ hilarious. We all started laughing since most people had some cookie-cutter answer like ‘I work too much,’ or ‘I’m too hard on myself.’ Little did we know at the time that he was being stone-cold serious.”
Flickheimer eventually thought that his fear of eyes would go away, but he was wrong. “It was just the opposite. I was seeing 30 pairs of eyeballs a day and I just couldn’t take it anymore.”
If seeing was bad enough, Flickheimer recalls extreme horror when he found out he would actually have to start touching eyeballs. “That was the last straw for me,” said Flickheimer. “I should have known ophthalmology was a bad choice for me from the start.”