My Eye Doctor appt


(Gina) #1

Today, I had my eye checkup and they told me I have mild retinopathy in my right eye. UGH! I was ok until I really started thinking about it later in the day. All of a sudden I got really upset.

Upset because I haven't even had diabetes that long. (9 years this November) and I am already showing signs of complications.

Upset because now I have to go to the eye doc every 4 months instead of every year.

Upset because I may need eye surgery to fix this if it gets worse.

Upset because no matter how well I treat my body I can still have complications.

Upset because I may lose my vision one day.

Upset because I am afraid there are more complications to come.

Upset because today, diabetes got me down.

Tomorrow will be better.

 

 

 


(Alayna Strickland) #2

Gina,

Hi there. I went to my eye dr. appointment about a month ago. My worst nightmare occurred. There were "spots" found. Those spots are apparantely called background retinopathy. They told me that it could go away and heal itself. I could not sleep for days and I worried myself sick. I finally got in to see a retinal specialist and they took a look and found the two spots as well. I was so mad and angry because it was like what you said, I have been doing everything to prevent complications. Well, I went back yesterday actually and the spots have healed. However, there is still that threat and the fears that you have listed above. The thing is, Gina, we are still young, you caught it at an early stage and its good that you are aware of the situation. Everything will be ok. It doesn't make me feel totally better, but just a little knowing that there is treatment for retinopathy. Hang in there. Another piece of advice, don't search the web about diabetic retinopahy, if you do, make sure its a reliable source i.e...webmd or something because I searched for information and just sent myself into a panic. Take care and hope today is better for you. It will be ok!

Sincerely,

Alayna D. Strickland


(Joshy84) #3

I have also had mild retinopathy in my eyes for the last couple of years. I have seen the same eye doctor since 2006 and he says that it has been saying the same since he seen me which I suppose is the good news about my problem.

Gina you are right tomorrow will be better. Don't let this one problem get you down.  We are here to help.

If you need anything we are here to help.


(Doug D) #4

Hi Gina - I went to my eye doc on the 4th and he did find some background retinopathy as well.  I've had T1 for close to 30 years and I considered it a win.  When I first found out I had some background noise, as I call it, I was scared and angry that here's another thing we T1's have to deal with.  Every year I go back, some heal up, some new ones show up.  I searched for the best guy in my area that is under my plan and I happened upon a guy in Beverly Hills - I figured, he's got the best equipment, will sit and talk to me about it, show me results and most importantly was under my plan so I didn't care where he was or the 'oh, he's in Beverly Hills' reaction I would get.  He had some new machine there and it would take multiple pictures - this was on top of the normal dialate and look in the back of the eye stuff.  He showed me the results and one some of these looked like the 1/4 moon pic of the retina and the layers of it.  What I liked about it was that it was different than a normal picture of the retina - it made it a two dimentional pic that my brain could understand - more for the patient to understand.  He showed me the really small dimples and the various stages it could go to before we'd start to worry or treat.  There was also another scan that showed the back of the eye in terms of a green box broken in to 8 coordinates - all of which were green which evidently means very good. 

I know that I am NOT explaining it well and as I'm writing this, I am going to call him and ask him the name of the test.  The reason I liked it is because normally I would have gone out worrying again - This test basically said 'you're doing okay' and I was the happiest I had been in a long long time about my eyes.  I wish everyone could experience that.  When I find out the name of it, I will post it here. 

To top it all off, I had a slight perscription for glasses in the past - normally I'd wear them at night and driving.  This time I tested out at 20/20.  I know that our vision can be thrown off depending on our blood sugar levels but each time I've gone - by BS has been between 85 and 117 for the past 5 years -  this time was 92 so I knew that it wasn't a blood sugar issue on my previous visits.   I cannot chalk it up to any one thing but at least I now know that our eyes can improve!  It does make us upset sometimes - having to be so vigilent - but good news helps that pass - we just have to do the best we can.

Be well.

 

 


(tombeatson) #5

Gina, Alayna, Josh, and Doug:

I want to offer each of you some reassurance. In my own case I first encountered the background retinopathy in 1964, and it took about 40 more years before it became proliferative retinopathy in one of the eyes. I can't guarantee the 40 years for you, but I think it's a pretty good indication that you are NOT about to go blind.

Tom


(Gina) #6

Thank you guys...

I am glad that I am not alone in this I couldn't sleep all night thinking about it. This makes me feel much better. I will be going back to the eye doc in November, and ask him about that retina test.


(joe) #7

[quote user="Gina"]

Thank you guys...

I am glad that I am not alone in this I couldn't sleep all night thinking about it. This makes me feel much better. I will be going back to the eye doc in November, and ask him about that retina test.

[/quote]

Gina, it's called an angiogram.  I get 2 per year.   It's a small IV injection of fluorescent dye and then they take pictures of your retina with a black light camera.  Easy and very accurate.  I know your mad, so am I.  get the checkups.

Problems, if you have them can be controlled with coagulative laser.  it pinches but it is non-invasive.  I have had 2 treatments so far and then my eyes stabilized a little for now.    DONT SMOKE and do the best job you can with the sugar.  Cheers and best of luck!


(EmilyR) #8

Gina,

At my lat eye appointment, the optometrist I saw had been a Type 1 diabetic for nearly 30 years. He explained to me that he had discoverd some retinopathy in his own eyes a number of year ago. Unlike you, he hadn't been very disciplined with his management. So, he took the opportunity to gain better control. Within the next couple of years, some of the damage was reversed. The point is, just because you have some damage now doesn't mean it is irreversible!


(Gina) #9

Emily,

Thanks. I am confident I can reverse this. Well not totally confident but like 95% LOL I will do all I can to get real tight control of my diabetes and hopefully that will make a difference. Everyone has made me feel much better with all the comments back. I am so happy you are all here to share this stuff with because I think I would have gone crazy otherwise!