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[IP] retina,insulin amounts and intro

<part of original post>
<I have a bad case of retinopathy.  I have had about 10,000 laser burns,
so finally had a vitrectomy in my right eye and am due for one in my
left soon.  I need to know if there is anyone out there who had
"reversed" their retinopathy (a bad case like mine)>

Hi Ashley,

In 1980 (age 28, 15 years after I was diagnosed) I had severe
retinopathy, and it lasted for around 5-6 years. First one eye, then the
other. I had over 50 laser treatments (not sure how many "burns"!) and
still sometimes have them. I had three major surgeries: cryotherapy,
sclerabuckle (sp?), and vitrectomy in my left eye in two separate
surgeries, then the same in my "good" right eye in one long surgery (7
hours)--I actually suggested that they be done at one time, and the
doctor agreed (because of my problems with anesthesia, etc.). It was not
the most fun time, as I had lots of ruptures, etc. I often taught with a
patch over one eye (I teach Hebrew, so to see the tiny vowel points you
need good eyesight!), and used a magnifying glass.

The good news is that all the surgeries and laser treatments worked,
though (as you probably know) it took a long time for both eyes to heal
completely (and I developed cataracts, but that was easily taken care of
compared to the other stuff). I have no (well, limited) peripheral
vision and poor night vision, but my center vision is very good.

Even before I got the retinopathy I tried to be in good control, but
remember that prior to 1980 few people had blood sugar meters--I got
mine in 1980 (at a cost of $600!). So undoubtedly my control has
improved (I remember my first A1C at around 13! Now it is in the 6's).

So there is hope! At the time I was having all this done, I was the
doctor's youngest patient with all this stuff happening to my eyes.
Later after things were going well, he would bring other doctors in to
see me to "boast" at how well he had done in my case. I didn't mind at
all (though I think the prayers of a whole lot of people helped too!).

Almost 20 years later the laser treatments are really well established,
so the hope would be that your case can be reversed as well. Feel free
to ask a follow up question either on this list or email me privately if
you wish. I'd be glad to help.

Hang in there!


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