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From: Leslie ( -96.249.123.68)
Subject: macular degeneratin
Date: February 5, 2009 at 1:53 pm PST

Last week was the toughest week I have been through so far in my life. I eat a great diet, have exercised regularly throughout the last ten years, things looking up at my little frame shop, then I woke up one morning two weeks ago with a spot in my vision that wouldn't go away. Go to the optometrist and he sent me to a retinal specialist. My diagnosis? I am very near-sighted, -10 and -12 and have been since teen years. I had no idea it could cause serious vision problems down the road but . . . apparently, it can. I have degeneration of my retina due to stretching from the length of my eyeball. Nothing I did, nobody to blame, just the shape of my eyes. Degeneration means it will progressively get worse, although at present I understand through others with the same disease that it takes a very long time and is a slow process. The reason I saw a spot in my eye is because I had a hemorrhage, caused by the weak blood vessels rupturing and the body rushing to fix, as it would in any kind of injury, except this rush to fix proliferates blood vessels that scar the macula and cause serious and permanent central vision loss. Four years ago there was virtually no treatment, now there are shots that for most clear up the fluid and stop new vessels from proliferating, the most devastating element of this kind of degeneration. (Myopic Macular Degeneration)

To make a long story short, and omitting my emotional state for the last week (getting better) it is not a death sentence, I have talked to people who have had this form for some years and who have been lucky enough to still have vision in one eye,(before there were drugs to treat the bleeding in the other eye) still drive, still go to work, teach, etc. etc. There are new treatments coming out all the time for retinal diseases.

I am now in the process of figuring out anything nutritional that might be related, or might help. I understand that my diet has nothing to do with the fact that my eyes are shaped this way. But there would seem to be things one could do to strengthen the retina in general, and/or prevent future hemorrhages. (Supplement information for Age-related Macular Degeneration doesn't really apply in my case) I stumbled upon the concept that high homocysteine levels can aggravate inflammation. With my diet I'm pretty sure I don't have high homocysteine levels, and a low blood pressure is good too as it would make sense that high blood pressure would also cause vessels to break. I also read something somewhere about taurine, that the eyes need taurine, I know it is found only in animal products, does anybody have any information on where I might find vegan supplementation for taurine? And I think Coenzyme Q10 and B-complex might be helpful.

Does anybody have thoughts on this, any information that they might know and I don't on what might help and even what kinds of foods to avoid, it occurred to me that garlic, being a blood thinner, might be good to avoid if there is any current hemorraging.

I thought this would be a good place to ask, since we're always reading about health stuff and looking and asking questions. Any help anyone can give me is so very appreciated!



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