The past two posts encouraged me to tell you about my experience when I was diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy. A couple of years ago, I had a very tough period. I had been stuck in a place where I felt that my diabetes management was “good enough”. I didn’t go on regular controls, I didn’t check my blood sugar regularly. Honestly, I don’t know why I was acting like that. Probably, because I thought that I had to power to control everything alone. But, I was wrong. And that resulted negatively.
Diabetic retinopathy – the diagnosis
In March 2014, after a long discussion with my parents, I decided to go on a normal dilated eye exam (which I normally do once in a year). I thought that everything will be okay. But, I was wrong. The doctors told me that I have diabetic retinopathy. Then she sat me down and asked me two questions: – “Tanja, do you want to be a mother one day?” I answered her “Yes, of course, I want to be, who doesn’t want to?” But then, she asked me: Her question was “And do you want to SEE your children growing up, achieving their dreams and goals?”
Yes, of course, I want to see my future children every day, I want to see them growing up, becoming better people, achieving their goals and dreams and be proud of them.
Those questions made me realize that I have to change something. I had to start taking care of myself. I had to start controlling my blood sugar level more often. Fortunately, the doctors discover it in the early stage and I had chances to recover. My doctor suggested a fluorescein angiography, in order to see what is happening with your retina. The doctor injected a yellow dye (called fluorescein) into my vein. Then the dye traveled through my blood vessels. A special camera took photos of the retina as the dye traveled throughout its blood vessels. This process shows if any blood vessels are blocked or leaking fluid. It also shows if any abnormal blood vessels are growing. Fortunately, in my case, everything was okay and I didn’t need to do laser surgery.
Besides the fact that everything was okay, I had to manage my diabetes, monitor my blood sugar level on a daily basis and take one pill vitamin c 1000mg per day.
Three years later I went again on the eye appointment. My eye doctor told me the news I was hoping for – I didn’t have diabetic retinopathy anymore. 🙂 I was the happiest girl in the world. But I knew that I have to continue with my diabetes control regularly in order to prevent it from developing again.