Category: My Eyes

May 19, 2014
By Michael Rupured

Search Me

WordPress — the host for my web page — tracks the number of visitors to the site and page views, how visitors found me (Twitter now eclipses Facebook), and all kinds of interesting tidbits. I don’t pay much attention anymore, but every now and then I like to see what search terms have brought visitors to my site. For the first time ever, “Michael Rupured” is the number one search term, with three spelling variations also in the top fifty. I really don’t think I’m famous enough for stalkers. The correct spelling suggests people see my name somewhere and then look me up. I suspect more than a few are coworkers or colleagues from my day job. Number two is “Daddy …

Oct 10, 2012
By Michael Rupured

It’s Working!

Two years ago this month, I was diagnosed with macular degeneration. I have a mild case in my right eye and an advanced case in my left. To have the condition at my age is unusual. To have such an extreme case at such a young age is practically unheard of. For once, I’d prefer not to be so exceptional. Since being diagnosed, I see a retina specialist. At first I went every six weeks. Now I go every four. Let me tell you, four weeks rolls by fast. There is no cure for macular degeneration. As I understand the condition, swelling occurs inside the eye that interferes with my vision. The peripheral vision in my left eye is fine, …

Jul 11, 2012
By Michael Rupured

A Little Good News

Finding out a few months ago that the miracle cure for macular degeneration wasn’t working for me hasn’t made going in for my monthly shot in the eye any easier. Until last month, at least things weren’t getting any worse. Struggling to see the big E at the top of the eye chart and then seeing a scan with more swelling than ever before took the wind from my sails. I’ve been dreading today’s appointment. That I’m driving up to Lexington tomorrow to visit my father for the last time added to the dread. As you might imagine, I’ve had a lot on my mind. The office was already packed when I arrived, New Yorker in hand and my brand …

Jun 06, 2012
By Michael Rupured

Going, Going, Nearly Gone

I had another appointment with the retina specialist this morning. I go about once a month for an injection to treat the macular degeneration in my left eye. Both eyes have macular degeneration, but the case in my left eye is among the ten percent of cases so severe that it bleeds into the fluid inside my eye. I’m young to have it at all, much less a severe case. There is no cure. The eye injections are supposed to shrink the lesions that interfere with my ability to see fine detail. First the doctor tried dirt cheap Avastin. It worked for a few injections than suddenly stopped making a difference. He switched to pricey Lucentis, which didn’t reduce the …

Apr 04, 2012
By Michael Rupured

My Day at the Doctor’s Office

I had an appointment with the retina specialist today to get my third injection of Eylea, a new drug that worked wonders for people suffering from advanced macular degeneration in the trials. The swelling in my retina had been reduced by fifteen percent after the first injection. So I was anxious to find out how much the swelling had gone down since receiving my second injection about a month ago. His office has three waiting rooms. The first, just inside the door, is always full. I picked a seat in the then empty overflow waiting room and started reading the New Yorker magazine I’d brought with me from home. Unless you are a voracious reader, I don’t recommend a subscription …

Mar 07, 2012
By Michael Rupured

Results!

My monthly appointments with the retina specialist roll around entirely too fast. Seems like I had one just last week. Hard to believe four weeks have passed since my last injection. If you’ve been following along, you know I have Age-related Macular Degeneration in both eyes. At 54, I’m young to have this condition–much less, a case as severe as what I have in my left eye. I suspect high mileage is to blame. If you haven’t been following along, read my post from a month ago when I last visited the specialist. Earlier this week I got my first bill for the new treatment: $3,790. That’s $175 for the office visit, $125 for the retina scan I get every time I …

Feb 01, 2012
By Michael Rupured

Bound for Blindness

This morning I had yet another appointment with the retina specialist for my macular degeneration. We’ve seen each other every four to six weeks for nearly a year. On all of those visits but one, he has given me an injection in my left eye. Macular degeneration is a swelling between the layers of the retina. I have it in both eyes, but the left eye is worse–a lot worse than ninety percent of macular degeneration cases. The swelling in that eye has advanced to the degree that it blocks my vision and interferes with my ability to see details. The first few months, he used Avastin for the injections to shrink the swelling. It seemed to work. The swelling …

Sep 07, 2011
By Michael Rupured

Another Day with the Seniors

I had my appointment with the retina specialist today. There were a few people waiting in the hallway, and the main waiting room was full. I took a seat in the nearly empty overflow waiting room and started catching up on Words with Friends on my cellphone. A sweet little old lady who had driven a member of her church to the appointment from Elberton was deep in conversation with a young woman who had driven her father from Buford.  As usual, the doctor was running behind. I eaves-dropped on their conversation for a good half hour. The older woman reminded me a lot of my Aunt Toodles. She was upbeat and positive about everything and told several funny stories …

Aug 03, 2011
By Michael Rupured

Hanging with the Seniors at the Retina Specialist’s Office

I was diagnosed with advanced macular degeneration in my left eye back in October. I have a milder case in my right eye. Macular degeneration is a swelling between the layers of the retina that eventually leads to blindness. There is no cure, but it’s treatable–with injections of one of several drugs to the eye.  Though still no picnic in the park, the eye injections sound worse than they are. My Augusta-based retina specialist travels to Athens once a week to see patients here. Normally someone unlocks his office before he arrives. The patients come in, sign-in on a clipboard, then take a seat in one of the waiting rooms. The doctor and his staff arrive en masse, dragging equipment …

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