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My story

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  • My story

    My dry eye became a problem immediately following my LASIK surgery in May 2001. Sometimes my dry eye has been a serious problem; sometimes it's more of a nuisance. One thing is for sure, there has not been a day since May 10, 2001 that I haven't had to deal with and manage my dry eye.

    I am part of a wide patient population of "dry eye" sufferers with symptoms arising from many causes including, but of course not limited to, LASIK surgery. Heck, I had 'sub-clinical' dry eye even before my LASIK as demonstrated through my years of battling contact lens discomfort. LASIK surgery nudged 'sub-clinical' into a full-blown dry eye condition. Age, gender and hormones play a significant part in the potential for debilitating eye dryness post-LASIK. Whatever the origin of dry eye symptoms, the dry eye population is growing in number and sophistication. I am an active participant in my treatment and research every new product and promise dangled before us (some that were completely ridiculous ) looking for healing and comfort.

    The first nine months after my LASIK were very difficult due to recurrent corneal erosions and terrible dryness. My vision was horrible. As the months ticked by, I grew more and more frustrated as the traditional treatments for dry eye, under the recommendation and supervision of my doctor and surgeon, failed to get my condition under control. Like so many others before me, the parade of punctal plugs (permanent and temporary), cautery, ointments, hypertonic salt solutions, nutritional supplements, array of OTC drops/potions and doctor appointments seemed endless and, ultimately, pointless. The hopelessness was almost as bad as the pain and poor vision. It did, however, serve to make me very, very motivated to change my situation.

    Things finally turned around for me in February 2002 when I began to use artificial tears called Dwelle (very commonly and fondly referred to as 'Dr. Holly's Drops'). Frank J. Holly, PhD. very kindly nurtured and coached me through the first month when I decided to abandon all other drops and ointments and use only Dwelle. I have not had an erosion since that time. Dr. Holly subsequently made two of his other drops formulations (Dakrina and NutraTear) available and as my eyes healed, I was able to use the other drops as well. I now use primarily NutraTear and Dakrina.

    In the winter months I occasionally have bouts of SPK (Superficial Punctate Keratitis-makes my eyes sting and burn) and sometimes A/C in the summer really gets to my eyes. However, for the most part, I have my dry eye under control but I never let down my guard. I often wear Harley Davidson goggles that have foam gaskets that seal my eyes from the environment. I try to eat well, stay hydrated, stay the heck out of drier than dust shopping malls and use my drops 5-6 times a day. I do lid scrubs, warm compresses, lid massage, take Udo's Oil (Essential Fatty Acids)...whatever feels good and keeps me going. The discomfort of dry eye has never gone completely away and I respect that I cannot push my eyes past their limit. But with my drops, goggles and other comfort measures, my quality of life has steadily improved since May 2001.

    "People may not always remember exactly what you said or what you did, but they will always remember how you made them feel." ~ Unknown

  • #2
    Hi Cindy

    Dear Cindy,

    I just read your story, and it seems very similar to mine. I had PRK, which is a lot like Lasik but they don't do anything with the flap. Anyway I had dry eye before with corneal erosion and they said the PRK would take off the epithelial layer and grow a new one, which it did, but it was soooo painful. Anyway, I can now see very clearly without glasses, but am so dry. I have 4 plugs and use muro 128 at night, drops in the day, goggles at night, do lots of essential oil and primrose evening oil. Trying to drink the 8 glasses of water, hard cause I'm always in the bathroom. I also do the eye wash, the eye scrub, and the eye massage. I think the goggles at night help but am worried that they may cause an infection because their is no room for anything to breathe in there. I am going to get a pair of panoptex or harley glasses for the daytime and I just order a trial of Dakrina and Dwell. Wondering how these drops are differerent from any others? Any other suggestions? Have you ever taken Bio Tears? All this costs so much money. Very frustrating, but I do have more hope after reading your story. Rocco


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