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THE MACULAR
DEGENERATION COMMUNITY

Rachael


 

Name
Rachael

Born
13/10/72

Home
United Kingdom

Diagnosis
Myopic Degeneration

Eyes Affected
Both

Eye Color
Grey

Age at Diagnosis
21

Acuity
under 3/60 corrected

Treatment
None at first, as nobody knew what it was ('93). Left eye appeared with distorted vision overnight, progressed quickly to no useful vision at all whilst the hospital doctors told me it would go away in six weeks. It never did. Right eye followed two years later after lifting my head whilst drying my hair. I got a diagnosis then of myopic MD. Right eye retains slightly better vision than the left. I had laser surgery to prevent the spread of the degeneration in 1997 but it did not completely stop it. I got registered blind in 2000 when both eyes progressed to not being able to read the top letter on the eye chart. My contacts prescription is somethign like -20, but it's difficult to tell with the visual issues.

Prognosis or Current State of Vision
Below 3/60 in both eyes, currently stable. Lots of floaters, many contact lens problems. I am now unable to wear contacts as much as I used to, as they are irritating my eyes. I have worn them since I was 12, glasses before that when I was 4. I can't wear glasses now, due to the weight of them hurting my face and head (I have fibromyalgia which can make wearing such things as glasses and contacts extremely painful.)

Family History
Mum has a retinal tear in the peripheral of her left eye which she got aged around 50. She is -14.50 for glasses.

Impact on My Life
Had to give up work. Lost my independence and finally my husband.

Positive Effects
New partner has RP (met through a "blind" social activity). He's better than the old model by miles. :)

Adaptations
White cane, sighted guides, just getting on with everything else.

Employment
None. I'm sure the UK government will try to force me off their meagre disibility benefits into work, but if they could find me a job which I could do, I'd gladly take it. I have my doubts, however.

More About Me
I have two lovely dogs who I regularly fall over, but they don't mind, and neither do I. I have kidney disease, high bp and fibromyalgia, also. They're not quite as much fun as the dogs. :)