Thursday, September 23, 2010

It’s Complicated . . .

I’ve had diabetes for a long time.  I often say I feel lucky and proud to have come this far without any complications.  Or sometimes I say with almost no complications.  Because I’m not really sure how to classify myself.

For the most part, everything is fine.  Everything except my eyes.  A couple of years ago, for the first time ever, my eye doctor found a tiny bleed.  Six months later, it was gone but a new one had appeared in the other eye.  Every six months I go in for another dilation exam.  Every six months, the last tiny bleed has cleared up but a new tiny bleed is found.

My latest six month exam happened a few days ago.  This time the tiny bleed from six months ago has remained.  It’s way off in the peripheral and so small that Dr. C had to look very very hard to find it.  No other bleeds have cropped up.  Dr. C said this is amazing for someone who has been diabetic as long as I have.  She also thinks it may be time to go back to annual dilation exams instead of bi-annual.  We’ll do one more exam in six months, but if things continue to not-progress I won’t have to come back for a year.

Happy news indeed.  But now where do I stand in complication status?  I have small leaks in the vessels of my eyes.  Extremely small leaks that are not affecting my vision at all.  So how do I classify myself?  As far as I’m concerned, I do not have retinopathy.  I still think of myself as being complication free.  But is that actually true?  Or at this stage of the game, does it even matter if one tiny bleed is considered a complication or not?


  1. I certainly think you can consider yourself to be proud of your very significant achievement. One take might be that you've got no complications that affect your life.

  2. I'm with ya! What do we say?

    2 years ago I had a TINY leak in my eyes. The dr decided to do laser surgery to seal it up. He said it was the smallest amount of laser he's ever had to do on someone in his ENTIRE time in the practice.

    I've been told it's amazing that that's all the "complication" I've had for having diabetes for 21 years.

    The dr. keeps an eye on it and I've been fine. The leak never even affected me or my vision at all!

    So when people ask I say, "I don't have any complications... well, except for this one time I had a little bit of leaking in my blood vessels in my eye... so the dr. did laser surgery... but it's the smallest amount he's ever had to do..."

    Maybe I should just say..."yep, I'm complication free"?!?!? :)

    That would be a lot easier and simpler- huh?!

    Congrats on your accomplishments!

  3. WOOT...annual eye exams compared to bi-annual sounds terrific. How long have you had "d"? Sometimes I get really worried about Joe and complications since he was 3 when he was diagnosed. I know many, many, many factors play into the "complication" sequella, but, now and again, worry seeps into my mind.

    Congrats on an awesome achievement. Keep up the great work.

  4. Sounds good to me. Your doctor sounds great and you're doing a great job. What else can you do?

  5. Very exciting news! Congrats :) do you describe that? I'm thinking "complication free for now"?

    Whether yesterday, now, or tomorrow, I just feel blessed to have found you :)


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