Posted on December 3, 2012, 11:12 am by Dr Langis Michaud
Dear Concerned; I am pretty much writing this out of desperation. I am a 43 yr adult woman with Strabismus. I was born with a lazy left eye and I had surgery at 6 months of age and then again at 14 yrs. Up until my mid 30's I coped well with glasses. Now, at 43, I am living every day with eye pain and severe headaches from every waking hour. Daylight causes even more pain. The doctor says my eyes are 20/20 individually. Seeing far away is not as difficult as trying to read up close, use computers or driving. My depth perception is horrible. I round left handed corners walking into walls and I round corners driving. When I use stairs I often miss the last two steps.
Now my right eye is beginning to turn in and my eyes are competing, jumping back and forth trying to focus. I live in Windsor, ON but my OD is in Michigan, USA as my husband is American and our health plan does not cover me in Canada. My OD has tried reading glasses, progressive glasses, prisms, contacts and has had me do eye patching. It all came to an end in Sept. I walked into work look at the computer and thought I was going to be ill. My eyes just will not focus without tremendous eye pain and headaches. I have quit my job as I can't see to focus on reading or even driving. My OD suggested not to work on computers anymore and to temporarily avoid near work. I have got a referral to a surgeon in Toronto (March 27th, 2013) to see if I am a candidate for surgery.
My question now is; I can no longer function every day. I wake up in pain and the only way it subsides is if I close or rest my eyes. I have pretty much been held hostage in my home with the blinds drawn everyday for the last month. Out of frustration I went to get a second opinion today from an expert doctor in vision therapy. He has told me that they probably will not do surgery and if they do it will not fix the problem but only create a crutch like glasses etc. I can't afford vision therapy I lost my job and I have not had a pay check since Sept now. What does a person do? I am in pain everyday; I can't wear my glasses because of the pressure headaches yet if I try to focus with or without I am in pain. I am so frustrated I just sit and cry in confusion. Is there help out there for adults? Where does a person turn. I just want to get rid of the pain.
Thank You, Beverley
Dr Langis Michaud's response:
The first thing I want to say is that I certainly understand your desperation and your needs. I can not feel them, I don’t share your visual problems, but I am empathetic to your cause.
Without appropriate clinical findings, it is difficult to establish a specific treatment plan for you or to make any particular recommendation. However, some resources are probably present around you. For example, you can consult at University of Waterloo School of Optometry to see how they can help you. The cost for treatments is usually lower in schools compared to private clinics even if the professors there are highly competent in their own respective field. Email or phone to vision therapy specialists over there and they will be able to provide you answers to your questions. In ophthalmology, make sure to consult with someone specialized in strabismus surgery. A general ophthalmologist will not know how to deal with you. It is unfortunate that there is a very few doctors who are specializing in strabismus care for adults in general. Make sure to consult the appropriate people.
Good luck !
Dr Langis Michaud, OD M.Sc. FAAO (Dipl)
Associate Professor – Université de Montréal