Monday, May 06, 2013

Diagnosis: Glaucoma

It's taken me a week to process the shock of this news and to write this post. I went in to the eye doctor last week for a minor eyelid infection. Two hours and several tests later, I walked out with a diagnosis of glaucoma. And I am already partially, permanently blind in the left eye.

I worried about the cataracts I already have, and about diabetic retinopathy and macular degeneration. The good news is, I still don't have those and the cataracts are still small.

But I do have glaucoma, which was not even on my radar of things to worry about. The right eye compensated so well I was unaware of it.

The bad news is it is progressive and incurable. But there's good news too: The blind section is not yet in my field of straight-ahead vision, the right eye seems OK so far, and it can probably be slowed down with a simple eye drop. They say most people don't go totally blind if they stick to a care regimen.

It's funny. Now that I know about it, I keep closing my right eye, looking at things through the left and watching sections of them disappear into blank darkness. The blind section is about a fifth of my field of vision, directly above my line of sight. How could I not have noticed that? How could those puff tests every year at the optometrists have not picked up on the increased pressure?

Better yet, how can I get past this. Blindness is the one thing I don't think I could endure.



13 comments:

eileeninmd said...

I am sorry to hear about the Glaucoma. My hubby has had it for years, he sees a specialist and they seem to keep it under control. I hope you take good care of your eyes too. Take care and I wish you a happy week!

MyMaracas said...

Thanks Eileen. I'm sorry your husband has it, but it does give me hope that he's able to control it. Maybe I can too.

Nora at Island Rambles said...

It will be ok, I have it also. Just keep up all your appointments with the doctor, make sure he is a good one, use the drops and if they do not work get different ones. Have a visual field every six months and eye pressure rechecks every 6 weeks if you are still too high. They have a new stint drain they can put in now but it is still in the preliminary stages. There are other operations to drain the fluid if nothing works.

MyMaracas said...

Nora, you too?? This seems to be more common than I thought. Thanks so much for the advice - I will certainly take it to heart. Hopefully, just the drops will do the trick. The thought of eye surgery is scary.

Daryl said...

stay strong ... my mom had this .. but she did the eye drop regimen and kept it from progressing ... there's no 'maybe' involved .. you control your diabetes, this is easier ...

MyMaracas said...

Daryl, you're right about this being easier. And the fact that your mom's didn't progress gives me hope. Thanks!

EG CameraGirl said...

Oh dear! I learned nearly a year ago that I have glaucoma and that I have also lost some sight in my left eye. So far it is under control. Be sure to do what your doctor tells you!

Carver said...

I'm so sorry to hear that. I'll be sending out good thoughts for you.

MyMaracas said...

EG, I'm so sorry you have it, and that your vision is affected too. Thanks for sharing. It helps to know others are successfully controlling it.

Carver - thanks!

Rachel Carter said...

My dad had this, once a doctor caught it, it never got worse and he was fine for many many years. You will be okay!

MyMaracas said...

Oh that is good to hear! Thanks, Rachel!

desertskyquilts said...

All you have to do is stave it off until science goes a bit further. There have already been 11 operations in Sarasota, FL, where a doctor has put tiny little microscopes into people's eyes, people of all ages. I think the oldest was 81. It takes about 5 months of therapy to get a person's brain to recognize and send signals appropriately, but 9 of the 11 were able to do it, while the other two it sounds like could have but didn't take to the therapy regimen well. So keep it at bay as long as you can, but don't give up thinking there alternatives are coming, too. We are so completely on the cusp of many things having to do with aging. Things are changing!

MyMaracas said...

desertsky - wow, that would be amazing! Thanks so much for that info and for the encouraging words.