Not My Good Eye!
Today was the first day I couldn’t see well enough to read. It was sudden. It hit me like a ton of bricks. It’s been the only thing on my mind since it happened. Even though it’s only (only!) one eye. Had I ever thought I would be saying it’s only one eye? No. I live in a time when science and medicine can fix almost anything.
Struggling to read
The lightning struck when I was sitting in the retinal specialist’s office with a bandage over my wet left eye while waiting for my next injection. At this point, in my previous appointments, with my glasses, I could still read a magazine, or work on my phone with my good eye. Today, I struggled to focus, but that blurry grey area right in the middle of each sentence I was trying to read would not budge.
My worsening dry eye
I knew my dry right eye was getting worse, but the Amsler grid hadn’t shown me this. It was such a gradual, insidious decline. The OCT pictures done on that eye just a few weeks ago showed it hadn’t advanced to wet, which had been my main worry. I had even tried penciling in the blurry clouds on the Amsler grid to compare over time, but that is easier said than done, and didn’t show much, if any, change.
Seeing things differently
I thought of Sue’s and Andrea’s descriptions of eccentric viewing and tried it. It seems to work, but is very slow and will take practice. But at least it may be a workable option. Thank goodness for that. Who else on here has tried it?
My good, wet eye
So now, my wet left eye has become my “good” eye. If I squint and work at it, and the light is perfect, I can sometimes read the best before dates at the grocery store without my glasses. It focuses more closely, while the right is better for distance. But what happens if I have a major bleed? So far the injections are holding the line, but I believe when even a minor bleed happens, a small bit of vision is lost.
As I sit writing this, I still have a bit of blurriness from today’s injection. Perhaps that’s emphasizing the depth of this new unwanted knowledge, or outlook.
Research for dry AMD
So now more research. I know that a stem cell treatment using a retinal patch is being studied for the geographic atrophy of dry AMD and may possibly be available when or if I need it.
An implantable telescope is now being used with some success in people with bilateral end-stage dry AMD. This apparently reduces the effect the blind spot has on the central vision. It is becoming more common in Europe and the United States. As of this writing, one person in Canada has had this done successfully.1 But at a cost of $20,000 our medical services plan will not be in a rush to cover it.
Radiotherapy or laser
Perhaps a form of radiotherapy or laser will prove to be the winner. Scientists are constantly working on newer, different forms of treatment for us as we now make up such a large proportion of the population. We can only wait and see. And hope.
Are you aware of assistive technology for AMD?