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[IP] RE: Vision: New Therapies Studied (but I question retinopathy description)
Thanks for the news...I've got a question, for anyone actually. This
article from the Albuquerque Journal describes retinopathy thusly:
>>Sometimes, when blood vessels to the eye suffer damage, the body rushes to
produce others to help the oxygen-low organ.
Unfortunately, those new vessels can cause a worse problem,
the retina and making a person blind.>>
I thought perhaps a word or two was dropped in this description, but I
read on and see that this conception of retinopathy is repeated later.
Having developed proliferative retinopathy in both eyes and gone through
laser and vitrectomy to stop the disease and restore my vision, my
experience tells me this description is wrong, wrong, wrong.
In my experience, it wasn't the newly grown blood vessels that block
vision and make you blind. It's that they break and bleed into the vitreous
(the gelatinous part of the eye) which means that looking out of the
affected eye is like looking at the world through a glass of weak tea (at
best) or through a glass of molasses (at worst, because this means you are
blind in the affected eye). What generally happens is the gradually, over a
period of months, the hemorrhage will reabsorb so even the glass of molasses
will eventually pale to cranberry juice, then to tea and finally to water,
if the person is lucky enough not to have a hemorrhage again before it
As the proliferation proceeds, the chances of it clearing goes down,
bleeds are more frequent. Meanwhile, the danger of a detached retina
increases because the motion of the vitreous which causes the cruddy blood
vessels (that are anchored on the retina but growing out into the vitreous)
to tug against the retina.
So you can definitely see why you want to stop that proliferation of
blood vessels in the eye but this Albuquerque Journal article makes it sound
as though vision were gradually blocked out by thickening growth of
brambles. (poetic license produced upon request).
So I'm left wondering if the reporter got it wrong or if there are
people who have lost their vision (even if temporarily) not to hemorrhages
or retinal detachments but to a thicket of blood vessels. Is that the case
for anyone out there who has had retinopathy?
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