1.06.2009

eye-eye update {two}

Whew!  What a day and it's not even 2:00 o'clock!

Had my MRI early this morning ... thank you to everyone who offered to drive me or help with the girls ... how sweet could you all be?  I am blessed.

It took longer than I thought, but I was home by 9:00 to get Hunter ... pick up my mom ... and head to Mayfair for some retail therapy.  We had a good morning, but between my mom's fractured wrist and my gimpy eye, we were quite the sight!

Okay, on to the update ... first I wanted to give a little background ... this whole thing started Wednesday as a weirdish, smallish eye pain.  By Thursday got worse, so I emailed the doctor who's been helping me with my migraines {most awesomest doctor in the world!}.  She said it sounded weird enough to be seen right away.  She was out of town though, so try to get in with an ophthalmologist or my regular doc as soon as I could.

Anyway ... I posted earlier about the rest of the story, only I left out how completely non-urgent the ophthalmologist was treating this.  I didn't hear back Monday morning like I thought I would, so I called the nurse and got, "oh! I was just going to call you on this.  I was able to schedule your MRI on Thursday."  Oh no, no ... Thursday wouldn't do!  I needed to be seen right away.  The pain, the vision loss ... I can't wait til Thursday.

She said she'd check with the doctor and try again.  It was frustrating to me that he wouldn't have put on the notes to schedule it in an urgent way.  Anyway, she called back and got it scheduled for this morning.

In the meantime, my migraine doc {Dr. Traci Purath}, was emailing me asking how I was, what I've found out and when I'd be seeing the ophtho again.  I told her when the MRI was scheduled and that he never scheduled a follow-up appointment, so I wasn't sure how I was going to get results, etc.  She said she would call for the results and let me know right way.

So back to today's update.  I had the MRI this morning and Traci emailed around noon with the results.  I have an inflammation of the optic nerve {optic neuritis} and would need IV steroid treatments as soon as possible.  She assured me there were no tumors, but there were some other things we'd need to discuss, and if I could come see her this afternoon.

We emailed a couple of times, when my mom, ever so smartly, suggested I give her my cell phone number.  Duh!

So Traci called and we talked.  Turns out in 20ish percent of patients, optic neuritis can mean the onset of MS.  Scary?  A little.  Am I freaking out?  Not really ... well, maybe a little.

The really great news is there were no lesions on the brain.  If there were, the chances of developing MS jump to 56%.  Here's a little tid-bit of information I found:

Not everyone who experiences Optic Neuritis Develops MS
Not everyone who has an episode of optic neuritis goes on to develop MS.  Long-term follow-up from the Optic Neuritis Treatment Trial, which involved 388 people with a single episode of optic neuritis, yielded the following:
  • The ten-year risk of developing clinically definite MS following a single episode of optic neuritis was 38% for the entire study group; the twelve-year risk was 40%.  Most of those who developed MS did so within the first five years after the initial episode of optic neuritis.
  • The strongest predictor of MS in the study group was the presence of brain lesions on MRI at the time of the episode of optic neuritis.  Within the study group, patients with at least one brain lesion on MRI at the time of the optic neuritis episode had a 56% risk of developing MS within 10 years, while those with no brain lesions had only a 22% risk of developing MS within 10 years.
While other disease processes can cause optic neuritis, MS is the most likely cause in a young, otherwise healthy individual.

A little scary, right?  The other news is that my vision may not return to 100%.

I have an appointment starting tomorrow and each day through Sunday to go in for IV steroids.  It'll be a pretty high dose, but I should start seeing some relief {I'm so looking forward to that!}.

I am super blessed to have found Dr. Purath.  She's been amazing and has gone above and beyond to help me out and assure me everything will be alright.  She honestly sees no indication on my MRI of MS, she's assured me she's looked at it again and again.  If she saw something, she promises she would've let me know.

I'm scheduling a follow-up appointment with a new ophthalmologist next week at the Eye Clinic at Froedert.  And will see Dr. Purath next week also.

Here's the thing, even though in the back of my head, I have this little nagging fear.  I will not let Satan take a hold of it.  I know God will take care of me.  And the thing is, by taking care of me ... I don't mean that I'll never get MS {even Dr. Purath said this could be a possibility}, because I could very well get it.  But there's a very real possibility that I will never get it.  What I do know ... is that God will take care of me no matter the circumstance.  I trust he has it in His hands.

And ... it says that if it does occur, it could be within 10 years ... and I'm pretty certain I'll be in my heavenly home by then!  :)

{note:  it's literally taken me all day to write this post.  i've been between emails & phone calls with the doctors.  explaining things to curt.  doing some work.  answering phone calls and more emails.  i am officially signing off!}

3 comments:

Amy Schaal said...

Please know that you are in our prayers. He will take care of you no matter what happens. Also, let us know if you need anything.

trisha said...

you have been such a strength and support to so many people, and in turn we are all with you right now, and will be here until the end. i love you always and forever!!! bug

Sue said...

Okay, I'm all caught up after reading your blogspot. Wow, Tracie, you are a woman of remarkable srength. We are praying for your healthy outcome. I know so many people have reached out to help. We are there for you in a moments notice.