Monday, September 21, 2009

Diana's Eye

We went for Diana's 3rd opthamologist appointment back on August 29th. The news wasn't good. He could not see any improvement in her left eye and wants to do corrective surgery. I asked him about any alternatives or therapies and he said that there were no therapies and that surgery was the only way. However, after surgery all he was going to do was patch her right eye again. Being me, I wasn't convinced and decided to do my own research. What did parents ever do before Al Gore invented the internet? (hehehe)

From what I've read, Diana's condition (amblyopic strabismus) cannot be corrected with surgery. Sure her eye may not turn in anymore, but she still won't see any better out of it. What causes the eye to turn in is a disconnect between the brain and the eye. Surgery can't fix that, but I think therapy could. In fact, surgeries usually have to be re-done after a few years - sometimes several times because the real problem is not being addressed.

There is something called "vision therapy" done by a few optometrists. It turns out that there is one in Kansas City that does it. Long story short, we have an appointment this Thursday for testing and another next Wednesday for more testing and then the doctor will write up an evaluation. After that we will likely begin weekly therapy.

The reason that there are not a lot of doctors who do this is because it is not widely covered by insurance. In fact, we will have to pay for all the testing out-of-pocket and then try to get reimbursed by our health insurance company. Incredibly, most insurance companies will cover eye surgery to correct the strabismus (eye turn). Crazy! Who cares if the kid can see, let's just make her "look normal"! Oh yes, health insurance does need reform... but I'm still not in favor of "Obamacare".

I'm off my soapbox now. We'll keep you informed about Diana's progress.

1 comment:

Eight Is Not Enough said...

Our daughter has the same eye conditon your daughter has and although we agonized over having surgery because I did not want to do it, we finally did. The results have been amazing. Her vision has improved so much. She still wears glasses but the glasses perscription is alot weeker and she has depth vision now which she had lost as well being able to see so much more clearly. We are extremely glad we did it.
Betty Porter