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[IP] Re: Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy

Donna wrote:
<I am 39 years old, happily married and  have a beautiful 10 year old
and I am so frightened of losing my vision.  The doctor said that after
diabetic for so long, that the eyes eventually succumb in one way or another
to diabetes.

If anyone has this diagnosis of PDR I'd appreciate you sharing with me how
your surgery went, how much of your vision was lost and your age when the
surgery was performed.  If you would also tell me about your prognosis, I'd
be so grateful.>

Hi Donna,
I'm 49, also happily married, with a 22 yr old son and 20 yr old daughter!
I tell you this because in 1980 (right after the birth of my son but before
my daughter arrived) I was diagnosed with the same thing. It was very
serious, but I saw a retinopathy specialist right away. I had lots of
hemorhages (sp) and sometimes I could not see at all out of one eye. I had
many laser treatments, then had two major surgeries on my left eye and one
long surgery on my right. Since I teach Hebrew, the dean of my school called
me into his office and asked me what I was going to do when I went
blind--not if, but when. That's how bad it looked. All of these things
happened in the 80's--the surgeries largely from 1983-86. I was the youngest
patient of his that I ever saw in the waiting room--age 28 when first
diagnosed with retinopathy.

But other than loss of much of my peripheral vision and poor night vision, I
can see 20-20 today in both eyes!

Lots of folks have far less problems with retinopathy than I had. Plus, in
20 years they've gotten much better at treating it.

My strong advice to you--make sure you are seen by a retinopathy specialist.
Don't treat it lightly--be aggressive in seeing the specialist regularly.
And keep your blood sugars in control as much as possible.

Hope this helps. Feel free to email me privately with any other concerns.



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