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      That was interesting, Sherry. You know, none of my ophthos have ever even suggested a cat scan on my eyes. The only test they’ve ever run is “follow the moving finger”. I think I would feel better about things, in general, if they were running more tests along the way.


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        Hi, My husband and I attended a very interesting and informative talk on how thyroid can affect the eyes in the Canadian city where I live last night. This talk was given by an Endocrinologist (who happens to be mine). He was stating how he feels that cooperation between Endocrinologists and Ophthalmologists is very beneficial. He works in the same offices and hand in hand with the Thyroid Orbitopathy Clinic here in Vancouver. This was a long talk with a lot of information given. I jotted down some notes to pass onto you people, however, with my double vision acting up and trying to listen please do not take what I have jotted down as gospel. Some of the thoughts might help tho.

        Dr. Robert Graves was a Cardiologist. He had a patient come to him whose heart was racing, showed signs of goiter and had the stare and bulging eyes – all symptoms of Graves to become known as Graves disease.

        These notes are not necessarily in order. Unfortunately still not a lot known about why antibodies attack the eyes and only some people get Graves Eye Disease. There are antibody blood tests however nothing to show the onset of the eye disease. Also curious as to why some people only get in one eye (This is me, one eye in 80’s and second eye in 90’s, however did have decompression on both eyes). Has been proven can be as many as 24 years that the eye part of the disease can occur. (Sorry!!!) There are cases where patients can get Graves’ Eye Disease without being hyperthyroid. About 5% of thyroid patients get TED but most just get a mild case which does not require surgeries. There is a theory that RAI worsens the chances of getting the eye disease.

        One of the first signs of the eye disease is that it is hard to look up and the eyes hurt. He said unfortunately not many people have reason to look up a lot except maybe people who bowl or curl but this is a sign. (My first sign was when reading a book going from the bottom of one page to the top of another, it hurt my eyes and they did not focus properly – which was sort of looking up!!!)

        He said it is important to go to an Ophthalmologist or Endocrinologist that is familiar with Graves Eye Disease at the first sign that anything might be wrong. Too many people put things down to aging eyes or maybe they have pink eye etc. and take their time usually going to a GP or Optomitrist first. An Endo or Ophthal who knows you have Graves disease will order a CT scan which will show if the muscles around the eyes are enlarged.

        You know what, I have so many notes here that I am not going to post this all at once. He ended up talking about and showing graphs from an exciting discovery in Italy, showing that taking Prednisone along with RAI seems to stop the eye disease from occurring.

        There were some interesting things come up in the questions and answers as well. Now, apparently, every child born in Canada receives a thyroid check at birth.

        They are starting two focus groups here to see if they can find common symptoms after RAI and see if it would be possible to catch at an early stage and ultimately prevent TED using anti oxidants. Also a focus group to support people going in for eye surgeries giving them more information of what to expect and exactly what is happening with their eyes.

        I came out feeling like every single person that has ever shown an abnormal thyroid should be hearing this information and aware of what can happen. The pictures shown could have been me and if I had not had this BB and talked to people who could give me information I didn’t even know to discuss with my Ophthalmologist I would have been very frightened indeed. These are our EYES we are talking about.

        It’s early in the morning here and I am being picked up soon to go out so am sort of rushing this but I hope it has made some sense and helped.
        Again, I say kudos to the Thyroid Foundation of Canada and another job well done. SAS

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          Thank you so much for sharing that information; posts like this are what makes this bulletin board so vital to all of us. I would have been so freaked out when my eyes started changing if I had not known about the symptoms from this bulletin board, and had some other people’s experiences to compare to my own to gauge how bad my eyes really are (could be worse).


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            Thanks Much for the Information!!!!!!


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