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Learned of a new, hopefully short term, vision challenge
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 Posted: Sat Feb 4th, 2017 07:37 PM
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Rockydog



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On Tuesday morning I was sitting at my desk at work when I noticed a brown speck moving on the wall across from my desk. At first glance I thought it was a bug, then it quickly became apparent that it was not on the wall but in my line of vision. I thought maybe I had an eyelash hanging down or something but after looking in a mirror etc. There was not.

It was a "floater" somewhere inside my left eye. It came and went for most of the day. It was again there for most of Wednesday but I had a two day staff meeting with reps serving 7 states in the office and was too busy to notice much of the time. At the second day of meeting on Thursday I noticed two floaters The Brown one and just below it one that looked like a tiny bubble. They moved across the my eye as I scanned up or down and right to left. This persisted until Friday morning.

On Friday They were both still there and I was considering seeing the eye doctor. About 10:30 my mind got made up very quickly. I was working at the computer and there suddenly appeared a very large dark black floater in the left lower corner of my eye. There were also streaked black lines that crossed my eye, almost like smoke curly upward. This was followed by a gray film that covered about 25% of my vision. After about 5 minutes it went away, but my full blown panic did not. I contacted the eye doctor and they had an opening at 2:00 PM. In the meantime the Black streaks came back and left again. I looked out my office window and hundreds of little black bubbles appeared to be on the glass with a curtain of what appeared to be like muddy water moving down the glass. Looking at the wall I could see none of this. Looking back at the window it showed up again. I was beginning to think that somebody put magic mushrooms in my breakfast donut.

The Doctor was a very nice young lady who found out that I am in the process of having a "Vitreous Detachment". As she explained it, in layman's terms I'm sure, there is a little packet of gel that sits between you retina and your optic nerve. As we age the walls of that packet can dry up and leak. The gel inside simply flows out and fills the pocket where the packet was. However, as the packet breaks down pieces of fiber break off and block the light flowing from the retina to the optic nerve. Until these all break down and disappear you will be subject to floaters. Mine come and go, from nothing to serious distraction, at random times.

This morning I had one for a while that looked like a dried up spider, black spot with several leg like pieces attached. Other times it's just a thin line or brown spot. I'm thinking of it as tinitis of the eye. She said it will eventually stop but it could take a couple of months. Also that at some point it will likely happen in my other eye, wonderful! I had never heard of this and neither has anyone else I asked, but the doctor said they see 5-6 cases of this a week in a 4 doctor clinic.

Now, enough about me. Because so many people have never heard of this I though a warning was in order. This is what it means to you!

This is not to be taken lightly. If you have these symptoms go to the eye doctor immediately! These same symtoms can indicate the beginning of a retinal tear which can lead to blindness very quickly if not treated in time. The Vitreous Detachment itself can ocassionally lead to a tear in the retina or actually tear a hole in the retina when the packet collapses as it is attached to the retina. Flashes of light, almost like lightning, in your peripheral vision can indicate retinal tears. Again, go to the doctor immediately if you see such flashes!

Also, take somebody with you when you go to the doctor. They will have to dilate your eyes. My wife was working and I went alone. The drive home at sundown was probably not safe, trying to wear the goofy dark sunglasses under my regular glasses. I only had about 10 miles to drive but oncoming cars with lights on looked like massive twin stars coming at me. Not good. RD



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 Posted: Sun Feb 5th, 2017 01:08 AM
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Charley



Joined: Fri Sep 9th, 2005
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Mrs. Charley has what is essentially a ripple in the middle of her retina in her left eye. I suppose it is what is referred to as a macular pucker. Plays hell with her binocular vision. Our ophthalmologist checks her every six months. Hasn't progressed, so it isn't as bad as it could be. Hope your issues get resolved quickly.
As for dilation, I'm lucky enough to recover quickly from it, can drive within 10-15 minutes of dilation. Mrs. Charley takes at least three or four hours for her pupils to start reacting to light.
Our ophthalmologist actually found the same macular pucker in my left eye, but it was way down in the corner of my retina. She said it was fairly common in we older folks, but when on the edges like mine is, it won't be an issue.



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 Posted: Sun Feb 5th, 2017 03:52 AM
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RobertMT
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I don't know if they've proven or disproved it, but lots of shooting shotguns and heavy recoiling rifles, along with lots of time spent outdoors, especially on or around water, may make one prone to floaters.

I followed Dr's advice and cut way down on shotgun shooting, when I had floaters, about forty years ago. I shot case of shotgun shells weekly, along with much time spent outside working and playing around water. My wake up call, was when I had to have both eyes bandaged shut, for three days, due to bad UV burn, from reflection off water. When you spend few days totally in dark, not knowing how good or even if vision would come back, you're much more careful.



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 Posted: Sun Feb 5th, 2017 04:12 AM
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12semi
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Rocky, I had this.  And I mean LITERALLY the same exact symptoms

My intra-ocular pressure was 38, normal range is 12 to 22.  Left eye.  

Right eye had lens damage and I had to have cataract surgery but pressure was 29. 
Doc gives me latanoprost to pull pressure down. 

I am at work when a spider crawled across my eye.  A huge black many legged floater spider that I am not kidding made me make an awkward noise, knock my glasses 5 yards away, and grab kleenx to wipe my face.  When I realized what it was I calmed down but immediately changed airline arrangements to get back to Memphis. 

As the cab pulls up to the Delta terminal my spider exploded into 30 million tiny black dots and one or two tiny spiders.  Look at ANY background and they were gone unless it was a white board or a clear blue sky.  I don't mind saying I was terrified. 

I get home, go to Doc, one of top ten most respected well thought of opthamologist in USA.  He looks, says, yep, yep.  You have a very large floater and there is nothing to worry about it will disperse on its own. 

OK, the dot plague dispersed within a few weeks.  The miserable spiders continued to cause me to see rats on the shower walls, bugs on my pillow, just did not let up for about 4 months as the two remaining decent sized floaters gradually broke up. 

Today, I have one miserable floater that continues to irk me no end but at least I no longer make noises. 

Yes, if the Doc is going to dilate your eyes you need a driver.  Tthere are two methods.  One is just a single drop in your eye.   The other involves 3 drops. 

To give you an idea of how truly unkind these drops are, the first drop is a pain killer because the next two burn like catching your thing in your zipper. 

I had mine done again December 2016 as the Doc looked for any evidence of Melanoma in my eyes.  Took the entire day to wear off.  

Now, all those floaters settled into the bottom of my eye and this is called a Lattice.  My Doc says it comes with getting old.  Great, Huh? 



 Posted: Sun Feb 5th, 2017 04:17 AM
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12semi
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Everyone needs to have their eye pressure checked.  Again, two ways of doing it.  One, a nurse kinda drags a device made in China across your eyeball.  Looks like she is using a cheap ball point pen.

The other way a Doc uses a more sophisticated and accurate tool.  I like accurate. 

If the pressure is up near the high side ask for a second test.  

High pressure inside your eye leads DIRECTLY to glaucoma and blindness.

Please do not screw around with this stuff.  Get checked.

PS. 

My Dad went blind at age 66 and quite frankly he did not handle it well at all, but you know I am not sure any of us could.  The lack of vision took all the spirit out of my Dad. 

Last edited on Sun Feb 5th, 2017 04:21 AM by 12semi



 Posted: Sun Feb 5th, 2017 07:38 PM
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golong
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My wife has had floaters for well over 20 years. Ophthalmologist says it is what it is. Will likely never get better, will likely get worse (has has been slowly progressing).

Like tinnitus, floaters are something that people get and have to learn to live with.



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