Thursday, August 16, 2012

My Eye "Issues"

A few weeks ago I woke up and my vision was funny. My right eye was blurry and my left eye seemed like I had a gray veil over it. If I focused on something, I could see it clearly but I couldn't see around it. So I made an appt with an eye doctor.

I went in and did the little tests and then sat in the waiting chairs for the eye doctor to call me back into the room. He asked me to describe what I was seeing (or not seeing) so I did. He then showed me this:

This is my vision test. The shaded area is blind.

He dialated my eyes and killed me with that damn light lol he said the nerve in the back of my left eye is swollen and he thinks it could be one of two things, both are nothing to fool with. He wrote me a "script" for my PCM to get me an immediate referral to a specialist for pictures of my eyes and to send me to a neurologist to get an MRI.

Pseudotumor Cerebri - Pseudotumor cerebri (SOO-doh-too-mur SER-uh-bry) occurs when the pressure inside your skull (intracranial pressure) increases for no obvious reason. Symptoms mimic those of a brain tumor, but no tumor is present.

The exact cause of pseudotumor cerebri in most individuals is unknown, but it may be linked to an excess amount of cerebrospinal fluid within the bony confines of your skull. 

Your brain and spinal cord are surrounded by cerebrospinal fluid, which acts like a cushion to protect these vital tissues from injury. This fluid is produced in the brain and eventually is absorbed into the bloodstream. The increased intracranial pressure of pseudotumor cerebri may be a result of a problem in this absorption process. 

In general, your intracranial pressure increases when the contents of your skull exceed its capacity. For example, a brain tumor typically increases your intracranial pressure because there's no room for it. The same thing happens if your brain swells or if you have too much cerebrospinal fluid. 

Papilledema  - Papilledema is the swelling of the optic nerve as it enters the back of the eye due to raised intracranial pressure. Fluid surrounding the brain is constantly produced and reabsorbed, maintaining just enough intracranial pressure to help protect the brain if there is blunt head trauma.

 Some important causes of increased pressure from cerebral spinal fluid and papilledema are brain tumors and brain infections, such as a brain abscess, meningitis or encephalitis. A significant proportion of people who are diagnosed with brain tumors have some evidence of papilledema. A pressure increase resulting from bleeding or from very high blood pressure also can cause papilledema.

So there it is. I have my appt with my specialist tomorrow. Tricare had my referral to the doctor in 3hrs and they called me. I've got to say that I'm very grateful for Tricare! I'll post more when I learn more. Keep me in your prayers and good thoughts =)

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