Sunday, May 23, 2010

Eye Injury Recurrence

Perhaps regular readers of Juan Or and Mommy's blog may have noticed of Mommy's 'disappearance' from the blogging scene one more time shortly after the recent 'disappearance' during the last week of April till the 1st week of May. This time, Mommy's 'disappearance' was not due to work stress, instead Mommy went on medical leave for the first 4 days of the week followed by a day of annual leave. So Mommy was literally unconnected throughout the week.

So what caused Mommy to have to take medical leave? Actually Mommy had a recurring eye injury that was inflicted about a year ago (you can read about what happened here and here). In short, about a year ago, Juan Or, who was 12+ months old that time, had held a back-scratcher stick and hit Mommy's right eye, so causing Mommy's cornea to be scratched, but luckily the injury was only at the outermost layer of the cornea. The wound healed, but recurred. And when it recurred, Mommy didn't know it recurred because about 2 weeks approaching the day when Mommy really had to visit the eye specialist, Mommy noticed that whenever Mommy opened the eye after long hours of sleeping, Mommy experienced dryness in that eye. But after having blinked plus keeping the eye closed for some time, the dry sensation disappeared throughout the day, so Mommy didn't give much thought to it. Then on last Saturday, the climax of the dry eye incident came when Mommy couldn't even open the right eye after long hours of sleeping and it even felt painful (or rather a very irritating sensation!) to keep the eye open! However, the irritating sensation fluctuates (ranging from less irritating to very, very irritating) throughout the day and felt very much like there was foreign particle stuck in the eye.

That Saturday night itself, after coming back from teaching piano, Mommy called up Tun Hussein Onn Eye Hospital to see whether they are opened on Sundays. The staff explained that there will be no eye specialists available on Sundays (or is it weekends? Can't remember!) and that only medical officers will be on duty. However, the hospital can call up for an eye specialist to come immediately if it is really an emergency case (and Mommy thinks probably the hospital fee will be super high too for that matter!). So on Sunday, Mommy beared with the eye discomfort to wait for Monday.

On Monday, Papa fetched Juan Or and Mommy to his parents' house very early in the morning so that father-in-law can take Mommy to the eye hospital (Mommy can hardly open the eyes at all so cannot drive!). Mommy was assigned to the same eye doctor that treated Mommy last time, Dr. George Thomas. After checking Mommy's eye with the eye-checking machine, he found that the epithelium layer of the old injury spot on the cornea had broken down. So Mommy asked him how the layer can break down by itself to which Dr. George said Mommy could have rubbed the eye too hard. This time, Dr. George instructed the nurse to put an antibiotic eyedrop and then an eye patch (which was never done in the previous treatment) to prevent Mommy's eyes from opening so that the recovery process is faster. Dr. George said that Mommy could only open the eye patch 24 hours later and thereafter apply the antibiotic eyedrop (Tobrex) once in every 2 hours and artificial tears once every hour (except during sleeping time). He also put Mommy on 4 days medical leave and required Mommy to come to see him again for follow-up on the 4th day. The medical bill that day was RM120 (RM45 for consultation, RM5 for registration, RM5 for service and RM65 for medication).

What and how does it feel like to have the eye patch on? Well, it was really no fun as Mommy realized that having the eye patch on is just as inconvenient as having other parts of your body plastered although it was just the eye and not the limb. Mommy felt handicapped throughout the 'patchy' period and surprisingly, Mommy felt drowsy and sleepy most of the time even though oral medication was not prescribed at all. It was also a feeling of inactiveness plus clumsiness, probably because of the 'handicap psychology' lurking in Mommy's head. There were certain times throughout the day when the patched eye felt an irritating sensation (though not in so much a degree as before treatment) but Mommy cannot do anything yet because it was not yet time to remove the patch. Another thing about having the eye patch on was that the eating process became tremendously inefficient as the mouth cannot even open big enough (due to the surrounding tapes that fasten the patch in place) to scoop in dinner spoon! Little bits and pieces of rice kept spilling out as Mommy ate food. Even the appetite went rock bottom!

As the days went by, the eye improved a little. There was no more irrritating sensation but vision on that eye was blurred and both of Mommy's eyes could not withstand normal sunlight. Luckily by the 4th day (when it was time to go for follow-up consultation), Mommy was able to drive again though Mommy had to have the sunglasses on to minimize the glare but still Mommy's eyes had to blink quite often when in normal sunlight.

From the follow-up consultation, after checking Mommy's eyes, Dr. George concluded that Mommy's eye showed good progress although it has not healed completely. Nevertheless, there was already a layer or so of cells covering the main injury spot though there were still small spots here and there that looked raw. Now Dr. George recommends that Mommy only have to apply the antibiotic eyedrop twice a day and the artificial tears once in every 4 hours till the supply finishes. The doctor also explained that recurrence of an old eye injury is bound to happen within 2 to 3 years and after that period, things are likely to go back to normal subjected to the new cells sticking firmly and well on the wounded spot in the first place. The medical fee for the follow-up was RM55 (RM45 for consultation, RM5 for registration and RM5 for service).

Mommy also called up Mommy's insurance agent (Prudential) to see whether the medical fee is claimable or not to which he said that claims for recurrence of an old injury is only limited to one year from the time when the injury claim started and that no subsequent medical report is needed to back up the claim. Only the receipt, credit card receipt (if paid using credit card) and a photocopy of the medical chit is needed to make the claim.

So from now on, Mommy dare not rub the right eye anymore no matter how itchy it is. By the way, Dr. George also mentioned that Mommy can still rub the unaffected eye because there was no weakness in the cornea in the first place. As of this time of writing, vision in that eye is not as blur now though the image is still not as sharp as the other eye. Mommy no longer wants this kind of thing to happen again, if possible - it's really no fun to experience it.


cheeyee said...

Oh no... sounds really serious... you take good care and wish your eye fully recover soon.

smallkucing said...

aiyo...last year you kena also during weekend right?

Wearing eye patch must be very troublesome. Felt clumsy and all that.

Hope it wont recur again...

Alice Phua said...

Cheeyee, yes, will do and thanks! :-D

Smallkucing, yaloh, the peak of the eye problem always kena me either on weekends or a day before weekend starts....haiya! Yes, having the eye patch on is very troublesome. Even my glasses can't stand properly in place on my nose. So whenever I look thru my glasses, I'll look like as if I'm rabun tua.

Sheoh Yan said...

Eyes are very important. You must really take good care of them. I can understand it was so irritable when your eye was covered with eye patch. Very uncomfortable and caused you to feel dizziness. I hate dizziness, i would vomit if i feel dizzy. I hope you are better now.

Shenny's mommy said...

Yes, eyes are most important for one life. Hope your eye recover soon. Take care.

mNhL said...

Oh dear!! This is really no fun! And eyes are real important in our life and they are super sensitive. U take care

eugene said...

Take care ya.......eyes are so sensitive but the sad thing is a lot of us really dont know how to take care, myself included ,,sigh//

god bless

麗威麗威 said...

Efforts to fight fuel!........................................................

Alice Law said...

What we heards from FIL was "one of your eye CAN'T SEE already!",lol! We were worried until he told us that you were out at Kuala Selangor, then only we were relief.^-^

The price is reasonable for specialist treatment, it costs us RM2k+ last week to treat both Juan and Xuan!:(

Btw, thanks for your warm regards! Juan Juan has fully recovered since Wed; my boy just discharged from the hospital, he is doing well now! Thanks you! I really appreciate it!:)

A wonderful week ahead!

Alice Phua said...

Sheoh Yan, Shenny's mommy, mNhL and Eugene, thanks for your concern. As of today, my eye is so much better now, but I think the power of that eye has increased. But dunno-lah, see if the power finally stabilize, then I don't have to go make new glasses.

Alice Law, hahahaha...actually on that day when he took me to the eye hospital, my eye memang cannot open at literally is 'cannot see already'! LOL! Wah....RM2K just to treat them!? Glad to know both are doing well now and that your boy is already discharged (yes, I heard from FIL that he got intestinal infection). Take care.