So far it works
Tuesday November 09th 2021, 10:05 pm
Filed under: Life

The left eye pain got worse and the night ointment only helped some and I was back in to Dr. S. today. He happened to be wearing all blue, the shade of blue of the soft wool hat that he did not know was waiting for him. He was thrilled and turned it over in his hands, admiring the stitching and the pattern of the decreasing at the top and the color and exclaiming how much he was going to use this and he wished he’d had it last week.

(My bad. I hadn’t yet run the ends in two weeks ago--the day I knew he’d so earned one. This is an old picture.)

He’s actually an optometrist, although he runs a lot of the tests for most of the doctors, and of the two ophthalmologists I’ve seen over the years, one recently retired and one is on leave and I was at a loss to know where to start anyway, so I figured he could direct me.

He noted that things did look worse than two weeks ago, and the right eye was affected somewhat, too. No it wasn’t just dry eyes like he’d hoped. He pulled one of the new doctors into the room, who did a quick look and confirmed what Dr. S. thought: I needed to see the cornea specialist–today.

He told me quietly afterward that having the two of them calling meant I would get that appointment.

Dr. M’s office called before I even pulled out of the parking lot and I had to explain that I was at the satellite clinic in a different city. I was told to come straight there, pronto. I knew his schedule was crazy busy.

And that is how I met the doctor who did cornea surgery on a member of my family. He brightened up at her name and asked after her with enthusiasm, and I thought, I like this guy. I can see why she did. He took all the time I needed. He listened. He asked questions.

So now I know why I can’t read my phone first thing in the morning but I can later and why I can’t read the clock in the car–and only the clock, everything else is okay–in the daytime. I’ve learned somewhat of what lies ahead with the Fuchs Dystrophy. I’ve had a very mild case simmering for some time; I had toddlers when one doctor told me some descendant of mine was going to have to have cornea transplants, and actually, my mom now has.

But it was time to learn more about this, because it suddenly said so.

Fifteen to twenty-five percent of cornea transplants fail, according to one major medical site. Okay, that’s it. Not moving away from Stanford. The upside of living in a crowded metro area is that there are a lot of patients and experience to keep the surgeons at their best.

He gave me steroid drops. I told him that massive IV steroids had had zero effect on my lupus or Crohn’s and that an optometric steroid solution was given me by an ENT for infected ear canals and it was, like the regular steroid drops, massively itchy.

But we had to try. Untreated lets it get worse much faster.

I got the prescription, got home, and put the first drop in my left eye. And saline drops in the other because it needed it, and because, hey, science.

Walking back across the house I felt an intense relief in the left eye, that fast. To my great surprise, it suddenly felt better than the right.

5 Comments so far
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While I’m sorry you’re having the trouble, I’m so glad that you’re getting such excellent care!

Comment by ccr in MA 11.10.21 @ 6:27 am

When I was diagnosed 50+ years ago, I was told it was genetic. They wouldn’t operate on me until it got bad–25 years later. My left eye started to fail ten years after that, and the doctor fixed it with a partial replacement that worked just fine. I will take the steroid drops till I die, but I can see. love, Mom

Comment by mom 11.10.21 @ 9:09 am

So glad you found a doctor that found something that works.

Comment by Sharon Stanger 11.10.21 @ 11:27 am

Sending a hug. Or perhaps that should be hugs.

Comment by Helen Mathey-Horn 11.10.21 @ 1:52 pm

Hurray for knowledgeable, caring doctors! So happy the drops are working and tolerable.

Comment by DebbieR 11.11.21 @ 9:41 am

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