Saturday, November 17, 2012

At the Eye Clinic

It's been a while, hasn't it?  Over a month.  A long gap.

A couple of posts ago, I wrote about the flashing lights in my left eye.  I was coming out of the University one day back in September when suddenly there was a little firework display of white light in my left eye.

Eventually it was diagnosed as a vitreous detachment (and here is a very useful article about it).

It's when some of the jelly pulls away from the retina at the back of the eye, causing you to see little flashes of light.  Eventually they stop (or the brain gets used to them and screens them out) but mine haven't yet and are especially troublesome in dim light.  It also comes with "floaters" and I have lots of those - still with my left eye it's like looking through a film of Vaseline.

Although, in the article mentioned above, it says that a vitreous detachment is unlikely to lead to the retina detaching - - well, it can do.  And the Communist had a detached retina in his old age.  A black curtain descends in your eye and then you can't see.  So it was worrying me.

Finally I had an appointment at the eye clinic at the hospital.  It's a gloomy department, built in the Seventies, crowded, with long waiting times (a notice asks you to be prepared to wait up to two hours).  Silverback kindly gave me a lift there and waited with me, which I very much appreciated.

I remembered taking the Communist there, about five years ago, after his retina detached.  It was very difficult as he was in a wheelchair then and there was nowhere to put the wheelchair without blocking a corridor.

Firstly I had some drops put in to dilate the pupils and had a brief eye test and then the waiting began.  Doctors came out of a series of rooms, collected a folder for each patient and called their name.  Most of the folders were very thick.  "Look out for a thin one," said Silverback, "as this is your first visit."  Good point!  Finally a doctor emerged, picked up a thin folder and - yes - called my name.

He peered into my eye, very thoroughly, for what seemed an age.  He shone hideously bright lights into it (I hate bright lights in my eyes.  In restaurants I always sit with my back to the window.)

After a lot of peering (and a very clear explanation of what he was doing, which I appreciated), he went off to fetch another lens.

"I'm just going to anaesthetise your eyeball" he said, putting some drops in my eye.  This, I have to say, is a sentence that doesn't suggest a lovely time to follow.

He got something resembling a contact lens with an instrument attached and stuck it on my eyeball and squidged it about.  It didn't hurt of course - - but it was one of the strangest things I've ever had done and I didn't enjoy it, I can tell you.

Apparently half the gel has detached.  If the rest then detaches cleanly all will be well.  If it pulls some of the retina with it, it won't be well and they may have to operate to pin the retina back.  (All together now - - EWWWWWWWW!)  Apparently people who are very short-sighted (like I am) are prone to this vitreous detachment.

There's not much I can do except wait and hope it all gets better.  I'm going back to the eye clinic in four weeks.

Meanwhile, it's very very annoying.  My eye gets tired very quickly, especially looking at a screen, and I'm finding it a real problem in my work for the actors' agency.  After a little while, my eye just wants to close.

So I haven't been on the computer nearly as much as usual and I've been missing reading blogs and everything.  But at least I'm back to blogging - I've missed it.


Blogger Jennytc said...

Oh dear, definitely not nice! I hope it settles down of its own accord, Daphne.

(3 attempts to get this comment accepted!)

8:50 pm  
Blogger Helsie said...

Sounds awful and scarey at the same time. Anytime your sight is threatened it's scarey. Hope it all goes well. I think if your eye wants to close , you should take heed and rest it. I'm a firm believer that we should listen to what our body tells us it needs in cases like this.
PS. Glad to hear from you, what's happened to Silverback? Has he gone out in sympathy?

12:16 am  
Blogger Yorkshire Pudding said...

Well I have missed you too honeybunch! I thought you had fallen into the same black hole into which Arctic Fox has apparently vanished. We Yorkshire bloggers have to stick together tha knows! Sorry to hear about your eye problem and hoping the medics are able to sort you out. I must say I don't envy you but as with any medical condition we simply have to grit our teeth and be brave about it all. Best wishes Y. Pudding.

11:36 am  
Blogger rhymeswithplague said...

I have suddenly discovered that you are blogging again after your summer trip to France and Spain, and have spent the last little while catching up on your posts. I had been checking you daily but had given up in something like despair....

So I'm very glad you have returned to Blogworld, but so sorry to hear of the problems with your eye. As my daughter-in-law's father is a retired eye surgeon, I'm now planning to have a little conversation about gel sacs and retinas with him the next time I see him.

11:53 am  
Blogger Daphne said...

Thank you all so much for your kind comments - they are VERY much appreciated.

8:11 pm  

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