Monday, June 26, 2017

New eyes... and God's goodness

I don't think I have shared about my eye condition with you here, but I have a corneal condition called Salzmann's Nodular Degeneration.  This is a pretty a rare condition for which they cannot really pinpoint a cause, but what it means in practical terms is that I have little white deposits or tissues all over my corneas.  They actually float as well as spread and grow larger over time.  Ten years ago I had surgery to remove them, which was really painful and tough to recover from.  It made me not want to have the surgery again.  However, I finally got to a place with my vision -- particularly with the detailed artwork I do and the computer work -- that I knew it was (past) TIME. 

Because of the white circular tissues/scarring, I was seeing hazes and four, six, eight images/halos of what I was looking at. One morning I wake up being able to see okay, and the next not very well at all, then the next day fine. Knowing it was time to address this, I decided to have the surgeries done one at a time so that if anything went wrong I would still have one (not very) good eye.  I just had my second of the two surgeries this past Tuesday, and I must say that in 10 years they certainly have improved the recovery process.

I am still recovering sight-wise, but the pain management is much better now than 10 years ago. I also had my husband videotape the surgery -- I won't share it here, as it is really difficult to watch.  Amazing to see the doctor working on my eye with those tools and not be able to feel it. He painstakingly removed every bit of scar tissue on my eye. It was pretty rough the day after the surgery, as I was in a LOT of pain.  I was able to manage with 3-4 ibuprofen every 4 hours.  But the next day I was much better - no ibuprofen needed - and the next even better.   For these surgeries, I was fitted with a "bandage" lens which protected my eye after the surgery and was especially helpful when I needed to blink. This "bandage lens" was not used after the surgerical scraping 10 years ago, and every time I blinked it felt as if I were scraping my eyeball with sand.  These kinds of improvements in tools and technology are amazing to me, and I am truly thankful.  

I went back today for the doctor to remove the recovery lens, and I am seeing okay.  I can see really well now in the first eye that he worked on. (Otherwise, I wouldn't have gone back for the second surgery!) So, I pray/believe it will only be a matter of time before I am seeing really well in the second eye. One amazing improvement with the new surgeries is in the type of "bandage" contact lens they used for my healing process. It is called an amniolens and was developed by a Christian doctor who believed that there was a way to develop a process for more rapid and full healing using young tissues, but who was not willing to use fetal tissue.  Through much research and experimentation, he discovered that the amniotic membrane of the placenta has many of the same healing properties that stem cells from fetal tissue would.  This is harvested from the placenta after birth and freeze dried for use in many types of healing for eye tissues.  You can learn more about that here:

"Ming Wang vs. Science vs. Faith" — Film Competition sponsored by The Veritas Forum from Veritas [1] on Vimeo.

I am thankful to God for science and those who persevere in hope of helping people through new discoveries.  Part of Dr. Wang's story is in the film "God's Not Dead."  I am constantly amazed that though I have this condition, God knows how intricately he has crafted my eye and has given me hope through this new discovery that my eyes will heal and in some ways be in even better shape than before.  And, I am seeing well enough to use the computer again... and hope to soon be holding a paintbrush or pencil and doing some new artwork.  Hope all of you are well.  Now that I can read, I'll be making the rounds!! πŸ˜ŠπŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ™‚

6 comments:

  1. Good Morning, Christi,
    I have been feeling a little down this week, but when I saw all your comments, it lifted my spirit to hear from you. I so sympathize with you with your eye condition, but am so happy that your surgeries have gone well and your recovery went better than expected.
    As you may have remembered, I have macular degeneration, glaucoma, and cataracts. I have had trabeculectomies on both eyes to try to slow down the glaucoma, and this Thursday I have cataract surgery on my right eye. I do not see well enough to drive and this week I am not seeing peoples' faces if they have dark skin. This has hit me harder than I expected. Sunday I was on the verge of tears all day. Finally, I thought to ask the Lord to help my emotions and he did. I must always remember to ask God for help for EVERYTHING. What would we do if we didn't know the Lord?

    I will try to get back to my blog as soon as I can after the surgery. My only concern is I have terribly dry eyes and they told me that it would be worse after cataract surgery. I am hoping that the Lord intervenes.

    I am so glad for your good results. For the kind of work that you do, you need your eyes.

    Have a wonderful week and it was so good to hear from you, dear friend.

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  2. We have a friend who's had a similar surgery with the placental tissue. Amazing what's out there. And yes, your eyes are so valuable, you need to be able to created! Happy endings, or at least, happy beginnings. :)

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  3. Oh I am very glad to read that your surgeries, though challenging, went well. I have been very afraid of anything eye related, especially surgery, since John had cataract surgery several years ago. One eye went well; the second was a flat-out nightmare. You most especially need your eyes and I am delighted that your surgeon was able to do such a top notch job removing old scare tissue. Glad to hear of improvements, too, because the medical community feels like the Dark Ages to me now.

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    1. scar tissue...autocorrect is driving me crazy! πŸ™ƒ

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  4. Christi, nice to meet you here on your own blogging turf! :)

    Oh my . . . certainly I am happy to hear that your surgery went well and the recovery was better than last time. Thank the Lord for medical improvements!

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  5. Oh Christi, I'm so glad your surgeries went well and your eyesight is improving. That healing lens sounds like a wonderful thing. I had laser eye surgery about 20 years ago and I know just what you mean by the feeling of sandpaper across your eye when you blink. Medical researchers are wonderful people and I'm thankful to God for the way He made us, and for letting scientists and others discover how things work. (at least partially!)

    Thank you for your recent comments - Tim's mother passed away on Saturday and we arrived home last night. Now reality sets in.

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