Sunday, July 03, 2005

Better Day / Optic Neuritis

Current Meds:
1. Prednisone (12 tablets {60mg} in morning for 2 weeks then 4 tablets {20mg})
2. Citalopram 10mg once daily
3. Lorazepam 1mg at bedtime

Current Symptoms
Physical: fatigue
Sensory: Optic neuritis in left eye
Psychological (memory/mood): low
Medication side effect?: rapid/pounding pulse

After some sleep I am feeling much better. Just needed to rest a lot. Thanks to everyone who has been leaving comments. Continue to do so I enjoy reading them; they pick me up a bit during the day.

I did some research on my Optic Neuritis (ON) just because it is driving me through Dante's levels of hell in my mind. Here's what I have discovered:

Optic neuritis is inflammation or demyelination of the optic nerveā€”the nerve that transmits light and visual images from the retina to the brain. Because the nerve is located behind ("retro") the globe of the eye, the condition is also known as retrobulbar neuritis.
It has been estimated that about 55% of people with MS will have an episode of optic neuritis. Frequently, it is the first symptom of MS.

Optic neuritis is generally experienced as an acute blurring, graying, or loss of vision, most often in only one eye. It is rare that both eyes are affected at the same time. There may or may not be pain in the affected eye. Loss of vision usually reaches its maximum extent within a few days, and generally improves within 4 to 12 weeks without treatment.

Recent studies suggest that a short course of methylprednisolone (which is what I was on last week for 3 days--ouch my hand!) administered intravenously, sometimes followed by a tapered course of oral steroids may be useful in helping to reverse the inflammation and restore vision more quickly. There is, however, no definitive evidence that treatment with steroids produces a more complete recovery than that which would have happened without treatment.

So basically... 4 to 12 weeks... 2 down for sure... 2 to 10 to go... I may be blind all summer. I can handle that as long as it WILL clear up. I have a fear of being blind, I depend so much on my sight for my visual arts in the theatre. Plus I just enjoy seeing. Sight is such a great gift I've taken for granted on so many occasions in my life. If you can see, enjoy it, take it all in, you never know when you might loose that gift. I had a nack for finding pretty and interesting things with my eyes, it will be back soon, I'm sure.

That just reminded me how long its been since my vision has been clear. The last moment of clarity I remember was driving to North Sydney with my girlfriend. My vision suddenly cleared for 5 min and I remember seeing things so beautifully--I cried happy tears for my restored vision, then it left again, and problems ever since. I looked at some old writing of mine, I've been having vision problems since April, no wonder I'm tired of this. I can't believe it has been that long. I can't wait to get this under control. I miss being able to do things. Soon, hopefully, soon.

A strong day ahead. Feeling good. Beautiful sunshine on my face!


At 9:13 AM, Blogger MOM said...

hey doug Its Mom I was very worried about you. but I am glad you feel better today. If you need me for anything just call me love you more Mom

At 3:17 PM, Blogger Jessi said...

hi babe
I tried to reach you before you left but I think I missed you. I hope today was much better for you then yesterday. Give me a call when you get home since I'll be in all night b/c the pool was closed so now I have to swim my 1km in freezing water grrrr anyway....I have stories from today involing police and halicopters.....first day my feet hit the sand....and already the police have been down....nort nidney.....funny town

At 5:59 PM, Blogger dave said...

Glad you're feeling better Doug. Enjoy you dinner with the Tai Chi's.
I'll be back at the Old Orchard tomorow if you need to reach me.

At 8:19 AM, Blogger S said...

i fear deafness mmore then blindness but either would still suck b/c you know what your missin out on. but not being able to hear music or be able to converse, hearin the other person voice inflections would be more then i could bear.

At 8:42 AM, Blogger Celeste said...

Douglas: Just catching up on your progress. Not a day goes by that I don't think about you and how you are doing. Sounds like there are still a number of hurdles to overcome. It is great to see you being so optimistic and strong. Keep the faith. Peace, Celeste

At 11:57 AM, Blogger boomer said...

Hi,My name is Marilyn and I have Ms as well.My MS has affected my legs,I have to use a roller walker all the time or the wheel chair.There is good days and bad I know,when you lose your balance and fall you just hope you only hurt your pride.I got your site from your father when I went up to the hospital for blood work,and we got to talking,hope you don't mind.

At 12:18 PM, Blogger Iain Dughlais said...

Hi Marilyn,
Thanks for stopping by. You are the first MS patient to leave me a note. I'd be really interested in hearing more about your story. My e-mail address is

Maybe we can open up a pathway of support between us.

-Positive thoughts and energy to you!

At 3:26 PM, Blogger Ankhanu said...

Blindness (and deafness) is probably one of my biggest fears. So much I do relies upon sight, I couldn't imagine losing it.

I hope your vision comes back to normal in the shorter end of the spectrum than the longer, Doug. I also wish you strength.



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