Wet Macular Degeneration at 51 Years Old
I never missed my annual eye exam as I always kept a supply of contacts on hand.
How could my eye doctor have simply "dismissed" my complaints that something was wrong? During a casual conversation with my brother, I mentioned this and he strongly suggested I go to his eye doctor. So glad I listened to him and went to his ophthalmologist.
In April 2009 I was referred immediately to a retina specialist and was diagnosed with wet macular degeneration in both eyes.
What a shocker-I didn't even know what it meant. My left eye has the "twisting" with gray distortion in the center. My right eye has no distortion, thank goodness.
I am female born in 1958, have never smoked, not obese, and it's not in my family history. I'm in good health, take no medications and I exercise regularly.
Treatment started with Avastin injections,in both my eyes for maybe 5 months. It seemed to help shrink the hole but the results were inconsistent.
The doctor wasn't pleased with my results with Avastin. It seemed to work at the beginning but we seemed to be getting nowhere.
With a switch to Lucentis my eyes responded better. I know studies showed it to be the same as Avastin but not in my case. Lucentis helped shrink the sizable hole but it wouldn't totally seal the leak.
The injections continued in the left eye until September of 2010. The right eye was doing OK. No shots since June 2010.
The shots are indeed risky and results were inconsistent so the doctor suggested photodynamic therapy (PDT).
I agreed we needed a different approach. October of 2010 I received photo dynamic therapy (PDT) in both eyes. About a month after the PDT treatment I had a posteriour vitreous detachment (PVD) but thankfully not a detached retina.
It has left me with some rather large floaters. In late December 2010 I received a shot in the left (bad) eye.
February 2011 I saw the retina doc for my regular follow up and it was anything but typical. He said the leaks were closed! I am happy to report that 2011 has been a NO SHOT YEAR! I continue to see my retina specialist regularly.
I hope my experience can help someone else.
Wet Macular Degeneration
(London, England )
I am one of the lucky ones ............... I have been having the Lucentis Injections.
From the very first one I found improvement and so it continued with each injection.
I have had 9 injections and when I saw the consultant again on the 23rd March I was told that all the fluid etc., had gone and all that was left was a little scarring at the back of the eye.
I was told to go get some new glasses prescribed because my vision in that eye was now a lot sharper ........
I am so relieved as both my mother and grandfather were nearly blind with this eye disease - that was in the days when they could do nothing to treat it with.
So I hope and pray that the eye holds and does not get problems again :)
Thank you Anita for sharing your story with us. Keep us posted!
How having Wet AMD has been for me.
A Happy Life With Wet Macular Degeneration
My macular degeneration was discovered when I had cataract surgery. I have been having Lucentis injections in my left eye for over 3 years and have 20/20 vision.
I still had sight in my right eye when I started this treatment, but received an injection of Avastin during the first visit and by the next appointment (6 weeks) my sight was gone in the right eye. The doctor said that in that length of time, I even had developed scar tissue.
Anyway, I spent the first year terrified that I would be driving down the street and my sight would just go..... I did have an experience with having the length between injections stretched out to 2 months, and I could tell from the changes in my sight that I needed to go in.
I didn't need an Amsler Grid to be aware of the changes. I think I am the only patient that receives Lucentis out of patients in 3 different locations.
I am most thankful for the progress in treatment and have high hopes that I will continue to get to read, look at my grandchildren, work and see the beauty of nature. I met a woman at the doctor's office that said she felt guilty that she was going to pass this along to her children. I told her that my parents did not have AMD, but my uncle did and one grandparent had blindness - not sure what kind. I think she felt encouraged.
We need to encourage each other as much as possible. It's a lonely feeling to not know anybody else with macular degeneration. Thanks for giving me a platform.
Thanks Nancy for sharing your story with us and for encouraging not only your fellow patient at the doctor's office but all of our WebRN-MacularDegeneraiton.com readers as well.
Macular Degeneration - I AM NOT BLIND
In January 2008, I lost my sight suddenly while driving on an off ramp on my way to a Sunday brunch.
Thanks to cellphones I got home, called my health care provider, at UC Davis, and received a call back in 20 minutes from an ophthalmologist on that Sunday Holiday weekend.
The next day I was taken to UC Davis hospital on Martin Luther King Holiday and examined and told I had Macular Degeneration and that they would call me the next day when the Eye Clinic opened.
They called the next day at 7;30AM and hurried me over to the clinic. After 6 hours, three retinal surgeons, and multiple retina pictures, Dr David Telander started me on Lucentis injections, less than 50 hours after the eye eruptions occured.
Every four weeks I went back for more injections. After the third round, I began to see fog, then figures moving. Slowly, my vision returned and by March I was told I did not need more injections because I passed the 20/20 vision test.
I credit the speed in which I was treated, Dr. Telander, and God with my recovery. To repay God, I worked for three and one half years as a volunteer for The Foundation Fighting Blindness, going to seminars, here in Sacramento and in San Francisco, and staying up all night studying eye diseases on my computer like this column.
I have given over twenty-five lectures about Gordon Gund and the Foundation,and on eye diseases research and healthy things to do to help yourself - mainly not give up hope
I answered calls for information and help until the Los Angeles office called and canceled my work.I guess God thought I payed my debt. I still take eye vitamins with lutein, fish oil, eat an eye diet with fish three times a week, etc,have regular eye exams, and still have 20/20 vision following my own lectures advise.
I once trained teachers for Baylor University so it was an easy transition to teach vision health.
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