curious about eye issues... still not diagnosed...

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curious about eye issues... still not diagnosed...

Postby HunnyBunny » Mon Apr 18, 2011 6:38 pm

Hello Everyone,

I am still in the "being diagnosed" stages. Not even sure if this is MS. I've posted on the Introduction site, but I thought I would ask about this interesting issues I've been having with my eyes. First I've started getting a terrible dull ache behind both eyes. I see flashes & spots. My left eye has a pain in one spot like it's dry. My glasses aren't helping much. They're also very annoying because of the numbness around my face & ears. I went to the eye Dr for my 2 yr check-up, and apparently my right eye for reading has gotten worse... just my right. My left has a dry spot on it (ah-ha) that she says is caused by it not closing properly when blinking or sleeping. I also have pigmented lattice degeneration (potential start of detached retinal... has to be watched) she said could have been caused by my fall. Plus my-far sight has gotten worse. She said based on my tests I need two different sets of glasses. Oh yeah, and during & after my vision tests, all my symptoms got worse for about 2 days. It was pretty bad. Don't know what that means...

Anyway, any comments, input would be great!

Wishing you all well,
Amanda
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Postby Bubba » Mon Apr 18, 2011 6:46 pm

I know you never want to ask a woman this.....But...How old are you? I had a lot of the same problems. First thing my Dr said was, "well, your over 40" My eye Dr. said it was age and not MS related... 8O
w/m 44
The problem comes with the decision of weighing the unknown with the unknown.
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Postby HunnyBunny » Mon Apr 18, 2011 7:45 pm

LOL! Oh well, yes, some of it is age related, I agree... I am nearsighted and have been wearing glasses for 4 years (2 of them just reading glasses). I can see the prescription part of it being age, but the eye pain and dry spot? Also the pigmented lattice usually happens only as a genetic disorder or from an accident. There is not history of eye problems (other than age glasses with age) in my family. My eye Dr made it sound like it wasn't something that just happens with age. The flashes could be from that, but the spots (or rather spot) I see is always in the same place in the same shape, like someone took a picture and I still see the "flash", that lasts a minute or 2 then it's gone. I guess it all seems all to coincide with my accident. And sometimes I just like to babble because I'm so frustrated with always being numb and tingly and weak and tired and fatigued and generally that feeling like I'm falling apart.

:wink:

ps. I don't care about giving away my age, I'm 42 yo
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Postby mrbarlow » Tue Apr 19, 2011 10:39 am

From 2006 to 2009 I had periodic dry eye in the same eye I developed ON in.

At the time I associated it with Laser eye surgery I had in early 2006. However I do wonder if this was a very early mild symptom
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Postby DrDiana » Tue Apr 26, 2011 9:25 pm

Hi HunnyBunny,

I'm fairly new here and just saw your post. You hit the jackpot -- I'm an eye doc on professional disability due to Ehlers-Danlos and autonomic dysfunction (and I was headed to MS, and have had angioplasty for CCSVI).
Now, your eyes.
Lattice degen, is VERY common, especially with near-sightedness, and as long as your doc is monitoring it, you should be fine. If retinal holes develop in the lattice, they may choose to laser them, depending upon their location and how near-sighted you are (the more near-sighted, the thinner the retina). Spots and floaters are normal (but annoying). If you have a big one, you likely had a vitreal detachment (we all have those), but sometimes they take just a little bit of retinal tissue with the vitreous and it is always RIGHT IN THE WAY! Over time, the vitreous liquifies and the floater will break up and sink, getting out of your line of vision.

You just want to be sure you know the signs of retinal tears or detachments -- sudden onset of floaters, flashes of light out to the side, and sometimes what seems to be a curtain coming up over your vision. You notice that, then get to the eye doc that day.

Dryness -- oh, boy, this is big. If you sleep on your side (or with the ceiling fan on), it may be why only one eye had the dry spot. You may want to put in an eye gel at night (over the counter -- ask the pharmacist for one with no preservatives) and if that doesn't do it, there are a TON of other options.

The dryness and pain that my son and I experience (as do a lot of Ehlers-Danlos patients, and it looks like MS patients) can be severe. It may have a neurological component. On some of our MRI's it looks like the brain is sitting on the optic nerve. Yikes. The jury is still out on that one.

Don't hesitate to holler back if you need any more help. And be sure to turn off your ceiling fan!


:)
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Special interest in "brain drains" and how they affect numerous conditions, including MS, Ehlers-Danlos, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, etc. I am a therapeutic optometrist on professional disability with EDS, POTS, CCSVI, mast cell disea
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Postby HunnyBunny » Wed Apr 27, 2011 7:26 pm

Dr. Diana,

Thanks so much. You're response had cleared some things up for me, and at times made me laugh. You have a great way of expressing yourself. I understand better about that lattice degeneration now. I do get some lightning flashes and that "curtain effect" at times, but nothing that has really made me run back to my eye Dr.

As for the dry eye, WOW, I sleep on my left side! I don't have a ceiling fan, but that is too funny. I'm using GenTeal drops right now, and they seem to help. I was reading about Parkinson's and they did mention about problems with dry eyes from not blinking properly or enough. I saw that you mentioned a knowledge on Parkinson's... what's your opinion on that?

I'm probably just being paranoid and annoyed about how long this is all taking. Thanks for your input!

Take care, and wishing you well,
Amanda
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Postby DrDiana » Wed Apr 27, 2011 8:32 pm

Hi HunnyBunny Amanda,
Wow, I'm glad I helped a little, and very happy that I made you laugh (even though that wasn't nearly some of my best material. ha).

Anything that can affect the 7th cranial nerve can keep us from closing our eyes completely when we blink, so it could certainly be related to Parkinson's (or a host of other neurodegenerative conditions).

When it occurs mainly at night time, we call it "nocturnal lagophthalmus" and it is VERY common. You may want to get a "goopier" ointment for night time. It will blur your vision, so just put it in right before you go to sleep. Cool? (ask the pharmacist for the cheapest version of preservative Lacrilube. It's all the same stuff).

If that doesn't do the trick, we can chat about punctal plugs (not as scary as they sound), or prescription meds to increase your tears. And if you use the computer much, please make an effort to blink more. As ridiculous as that sounds, we tend to rarely blink while looking at the computer. That and the air that is circulating the computer is a BAD COMBO.

I'll work on coming up with some better lines while you work through that, OK?
:lol:
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Special interest in "brain drains" and how they affect numerous conditions, including MS, Ehlers-Danlos, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, etc. I am a therapeutic optometrist on professional disability with EDS, POTS, CCSVI, mast cell disea
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dry eyes

Postby hwebb » Fri Apr 29, 2011 2:08 pm

I had dry eyes for years, and started taking fish oil supplements when i was diagnosed with MS (part of the SWANK diet). Anyway - my tears went from being watery, to being oily. And with this - no more dry eyes! Was a very simple thing to do, and I wish i had've known this would help my dry eyes years ago.
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Re: dry eyes

Postby euphoniaa » Fri Apr 29, 2011 3:07 pm

hwebb wrote:I had dry eyes for years, and started taking fish oil supplements when i was diagnosed with MS (part of the SWANK diet). Anyway - my tears went from being watery, to being oily. And with this - no more dry eyes! Was a very simple thing to do, and I wish i had've known this would help my dry eyes years ago.


Sorry to hear about all the eye issues for everyone. I didn't post on this one yet, because it didn't sound exactly like my experience at first, but as the posts go on, I guess I do have some experience here.

Hwebb, as soon as I was dx'd with Dry Eye Syndrome, my ophthalmologist insisted I try flaxseed oil, which is an omega 3 like fish oil, so it should work the same way on dry eyes. Unless you're me. :) I had a major reaction to it which I described in excruciatingly boring detail on this thread in the Natural Approach Forum:
http://www.thisisms.com/ftopict-15912.html

I also have a punctal plug, which, like DrD says, is no big deal. Unless you're me. :) The doc could only manage to jam one into a single tear duct - finally gave up on the other one. It really didn't hurt and it doesn't bother me, though. I also use prescription Restasis eye drops twice a day, which is one of the few meds that my body doesn't mind.

HB, I was told that Dry Eye Syndrome was not related to my MS, nor are my other eye issues, like cataracts. I go to my ophtho regularly (one of my nicest docs!) and he both monitors chronic issues and fixes weird emergencies, altho there's no sign of optic neuritis, the most common MS symptom.

Since we've got a doc on this thread, here's my funniest (not my strangest) eye emergency. Awhile back, the wind was blowing up a storm on my way to work and I got something in my eye that was so painful I got sent to my ophtho.

When he asked what it felt like, I told him it felt like I had 3 different things jammed in there: a sharp, scratchy thing like an eyelash, a big clump of something, and a fuzzy thing that kept floating around and blurring my vision. The doc numbed my eye and actually pulled out 3 different items: a thread-like thing, a clump of dirt, and a blob of fuzz. :)

Hope everyone finds some relief! There's some interesting information in this thread.
Dx'd with MS & HNPP (hereditary peripheral neuropathy) 7/03 but must have had MS for 30 yrs before that. I've never taken meds for MS except 1 yr experiment on LDN. (I found diet, exercise, sleep, humor, music help me the most.)
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Postby DrDiana » Fri Apr 29, 2011 5:57 pm

Hi Euphoniaa,

That was funny about your 3 foreign bodies! Slam dunk, nothin' but net! I bet you were feeling pretty good about then, huh? That is an amazing story! :)

I HAD to chime in on the flax seed and/or oil. Neither of those is NEARLY as effective as fish oil. My hubby keeps a decent blog on these things and here are two posts that describe what you should look for in your Omega 3's and a little info about flax seed and oil:

http://bit.ly/ipsBgS
http://bit.ly/l5ELzU

Yes, I worship on the altar of Fish Oil as it also helps with spinal pain (really!), among other things. Certainly with EDS, I believe much of our dryness IS neurological (this is one of those times that being the patient and the doctor is a huge help). It is certainly possible that is true with MS, too. I explained to my hubby that the dryness wasn't "usual" dryness. It hurt MUCH more than the testing indicated it should. It's likely cranial nerve 5 and/or 7 that's involved. But we still treat it like "regular" dryness.

That stubborn punctal plug? Since your doctor is nice, you may want to ask him or her to order a special one for you. You may need an itsy bitsy one (like the kind we use for children) or a semi-liquid one. And you may want them on both the bottom AND the top puncti.

Meanwhile, little things can help -- like NO ceiling fan at nighttime, point the car vent away from your eyes, etc.

Oh, and the gel at night time? (typo above), it should be NON-PRESERVED. Doy.

As BlueSky and I say, "BRAIN FOG IS REAL". ha. (OK, I say it, she laughs).

:)
Dr. Diana

Special interest in "brain drains" and how they affect numerous conditions, including MS, Ehlers-Danlos, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, etc. I am a therapeutic optometrist on professional disability with EDS, POTS, CCSVI, mast cell disea
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Postby DrDiana » Fri Apr 29, 2011 6:03 pm

Hi hwebb,

That is great about the fish oil help you're getting. I just wanted to throw out one comment (more for others than you, I guess!).

There are three layers to the tears - the mucous layer against the cornea, then the biggest aqueous (watery) layer, and the oily layer on top. If any one of those goes out of balance, we can get dry eyes.

Too much or too little mucous is lousy and we use "mucomimetics" for that. Too little aqueous tears is easy -- most plain eye drops help. Too little oil -- fish oil to the rescue, and too much oil? That can be a problem, too. The oil sinks to the bottom and you can get a dry spot. Sometimes we see that naturally (in teens, for example), but it's usually from oily eye make-up remover.

OK. Said my peace.

I heart fish oil, too. And when my body falls apart, they are going to have to beat my heart to death, I take so much of it. ha.

Have a great evening!
:D
Dr. Diana

Special interest in "brain drains" and how they affect numerous conditions, including MS, Ehlers-Danlos, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, etc. I am a therapeutic optometrist on professional disability with EDS, POTS, CCSVI, mast cell disea
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Postby HunnyBunny » Fri Apr 29, 2011 6:26 pm

Hi Euphonia! That was funny about your 3 things in your eye, though at the time it probably wasn't.

Dr D, thanks again for your insight ;). Anyway, I use to take fish oils, but I started taking chia seeds because their EFAs, calcium, fiber & protein. I think I'll get back into them. I have a really nice one with lemon & thyme. I've also been using my drops at night before bed and 1s thing in the morning and so far it's better. Thanks again for your advise.

Wishing everyone well!
Amanda
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Postby DrDiana » Fri Apr 29, 2011 6:30 pm

Sounds good. Be sure to read the fine print -- "do not insert chia seeds directly into eyes." :lol:

I guess I need to go straight to bed...

:wink:
Dr. Diana

Special interest in "brain drains" and how they affect numerous conditions, including MS, Ehlers-Danlos, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, etc. I am a therapeutic optometrist on professional disability with EDS, POTS, CCSVI, mast cell disea
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oil experience

Postby hwebb » Sat Apr 30, 2011 3:24 pm

certainly been my experience (testing on myself!) that fish oil works better than flax oil - even when the flax is consumed at room temprature in the form of freshly ground seeds. I try to take fish oil in the form of fresh oily fish (atlantic salmon, or eel), or in sardines tinned in springwater. If I can't consume these, i take oil capsules. I've tried fish oil capsules, and algal oil capsules. Algal oil capsules have the advantage of being lower in saturated fat (only about 10% sat fat, whereas fish oil tablets are about 30% sat fat)...which is impt for MSers. However, algal oil tablets are much more expensive.
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