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September 7, 2006

Diabetes and My Eyesight

eyes.jpgFor the past 3 days, I have been taking it easy by minimizing my online time. I even took a one day leave. See , last Monday after working for two hours on the internet, a hairlike strand just appeared in my field of vision. It felt like I had hair in my eyes which refused to go away. Oh no, I panicked. Am I getting blind? I am aware that diabetics like me are prone to diabetic retinopathy. Everyone with diabetes will develop diabetic retinopathy. Regular eye exams when first diagnosed with diabetes, and then at least every two years, will reduce the risk of vision loss and blindness. I couldn’t believe this was it. The start of my blindness. But I protested silently. I just had an eye angiogram 8 months ago and it was normal.

I paid a visit to my Philamacare-HMO opthalmologist who in turn referred me to a retina specialist for a retinal pathology. The opthalmologist saw some fluid in the retina but wasn’t so sure about it as my pupils were not dilated when he examined me. Yesterday, I waited for Dr. Chan at the Medical Center Manila for two hours. While waiting, I befriended some of the patients whose eye problem stories made me even more nervous. A diabetic woman who is a few years older than me is almost blind. She underwent a laser operation to save her eyesight. Before the operation, she could only see headless people . Though she still has blurry vision, at least the people she sees have heads on their shoulders. Eek, I thought. So that’s how it is to be partially blind? I comforted myself with the thought that perhaps my defective eyesight is still in its early stages. The nurse checked my long distance vision and I still had a 20-20 vision. Hm, that’s good news. Then she placed a few eyedrops to fully dilate my pupils. Good thing my husband dropped me off so I didn’t have to drive home with dilated pupils.

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