AnonymousOctober 15, 1996 at 2:38 pmPost count: 93172
I just really noticed I am about 20 messages behind answering the mail.
I am having a hard time seeing out of my right eye right now so my time
on the computer is in short stints. I will try and answer some of the
Graves patients need to have their eyes checked for dry spots often.
Indications that there are dry spots on you eyes are excessive tearing and
burning. The doc will put numbing drops in your eyes and then put in a dye.
They then look at your eye with a blue light. The dye sticks to the dry
spots and shows up as a bright orange dot. The doc keeps track of the dry
spots and how long they have been there. If they are on the white of the eye
they are an inconvience. If they are on the cornea (like mine) it is more
problematic. The cornea gets dry and prone to infection. The dry spot also
has a tendance to pucker the cornea causing pain and vision problems.
Treatment is packing the eye (done that last month) and using lubricant on
the eye during the day (doing that now). They are talking about putting a
special contact in my eye next week to keep the cornea wet and let it heal.
Glocoma checks. You should have routine glocoma checks. An increase in
pressure is an indication of the eye muscles swelling. Pre orbital decompression
my pressures were 22 to 23. After decompression they dropped to 12 and 15.
My pressures are back up to 26 and 25. This is not so bad since the eye
sockets have been removed. The eye muscles can swell into the sinus cavity
and my double vision probably will not get worse. I will probable have to
start on glocoma eye drops.
Stress. A major problem with Graves. One point I make to the new folks
in the support group is the majority of people who get Graves do not have
any additional problems after radiation. Only a small percentage continue
to have problems. Stress reduction or a change in lifestyle is in order.
Meditation, herbs, alternative processes are to be used only in conjunction
with what your doctor prescribes. There is evidance that meditation and
alternative methods do help to some extent. Counseling is also a major plus
to this disease. In that I mean that counseling if done with someone who
understands cronic illness can help you and your family understand what is
going on inside your body and mind. Understanding it makes it easier to
handle. See previous post on our guy in Maine who does the alternative
approach to Graves.
Skin problems. Never had this problem but most of the women in my group
have and most of my information on this has came from Nancy Patterson our
director. Cortizone cream helps and it has the added benifit of helping the
eyes. We have some bullitens on this subject. Sorry I am not much help here.
Sorry to hear your mom has cancer. My dad was diagnosed with terminal
cancer last November. We went home prior to his chemo and radiation to spend
time with him before he got sick. After three months of radiation and four
rounds of chemo he is in remission and doing well. Keep the faith. The doc
said dad would be dead in six months and now they are saying he has a full
life ahead of him (he is 71). The doc said dad’s mental attitude had every
thing to do with it. We need to have a good mental attitude as well. It
has everything to do with how we feel. Like I said some days are bolder
days. Yesterday was one for me. I was really bummed after the vist to the
doc. It’s OK to grieve, cry, yell, scream at the world once in a while. Its
good stress relief as long as your family and friends know it is not directed
If you are new to Graves hang in there. The disease can be a tough little
bastard and it can take over your life if you let it. Don’t let it! Talk to
us and let us know haw things are going. We have been there and know what you
are going through. We can make this part of your life easier because we can
help you understand it. Once you understand something it is not so scary.
I am having a hard time seeing now so I will sign off. Thanks for your
support. By the way Diane. My eye pictures are on the way from Miami. I
will get them to you when I have copies made. I also have an article I
wrote on Graves disease (a Patient’s eye view). I will e-mail the file to you.
Please put it on your home page if you wish.
NGDF support Group
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