Author Topic: Dry eye after GK  (Read 3815 times)

karme829

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Dry eye after GK
« on: April 22, 2012, 07:21:48 pm »
I am sure this topic is discussed somewhere else on this forum, but I am terrible at searching and don't have too much time to read through so much information.

I had GK radiation surgery 9/11 after watch/wait for about 6 years.  Balance issues and minor headaches followed but overall, I felt good.  The balance issues went away after some intense yoga practice  :), but in February '12, my eye on the AN side suddenly became painful.  I went to the eye doctor who said it was dry eye.  In march, I went for my 6 month post surgery check.  Neurosurgeon said the tumor is showing signs of cell death (yeah!).  When I told him about my eye, he said it was a normal reaction to the GK.  I have been using Systane Ultra but the more I use it, the more often I seem to have to use it.  About every hour or so, I have to put drops in.  My eyelid is raw from rubbing and no tears are being produced.  The Systane helps, but when I go outside, I have to wear sunglasses to keep my eye from hurting.  And when I am driving, I have to pull over after about half hour or so to re-drip my eye, esp. if the a.c. is on in the car!

Any suggestions?  Does it get better over time?  Is there any better product then systane that is on the natural side, rather then chemical?

Thanks for any info!

hruss

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Re: Dry eye after GK
« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2012, 09:38:07 am »
Helllo karme829

I have a dry eye ever since my surgeries - yes, it is related to surgeries but I have the same post effect like you. I do not use the AC in the car because my eye gets so red and irritated. I found sustain to be less effective for me and I use Refresh Celluvisc that are extra strong. I use them regularly and it depends on the weather conditions whether I use them once an hour, more frequent or less. When I am outside and it is windy - I instill drops more often. Wind is the worst weather for me and that is why I can't stand any fans.

Do you shut your eye manually with a tape during the night? What kind of tape do you use? I ran out of mine which I brought from my home country and I am asking for recommendations.

Hrisi
4.5cm right AN pressing on the brain stem, dn Sept 2007
2 Retrosigm surgeries in Oct 2007 and Jan 2008 by the Bulgarian prof. Kyrkeselian partially removed.
3rd retro surgery in Hannover,Germany by prof Samii, Oct 2008. SSD
Got rid of my bugger, temp facial paresis
hrissysexperiences.blogspot.co

mk

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Re: Dry eye after GK
« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2012, 10:18:47 am »
There are two reasons that may cause dry eye. One is damage to the facial nerve, which results in the lack of tear production (which is most likely what you have). The other is damage to the trigeminal nerve, which would cause reduced cornea sensation, meaning that the cornea doesn't "sense" that it is dry so does not give the proper signals for tear production.
Lots of us here on the forum experience this problem, no matter what the type of treatment we had.
It seems that your GK treatment affected one of these nerves. Whatever the cause is, you need to make sure that you keep your cornea propertly protected and moist.
You will have to experiment and see what type of drops work best for you. Since you need to use drops very frequently the preservative free drops, in the small vials are likely more suitable. There are quite a few brands, Celluvisc that Hrissy recommended is one that many people use. I like the Tears Naturale more. The thicker ointments are also good for extreme dryness and at night (although they do blur the vision).
If your cornea is extremely irritated right now, you may need some steroid drops (available by prescription, to help ease the irritation). Some people use glasses with side shields to protect from the dry air. There is a lot of information on the forum on various techniques.
As I said, lots of us have this problem, but once you find the right regimen for yourself it can be controlled.

Marianna
GK on April 23rd 2008 for 2.9 cm AN at Toronto Western Hospital. Subsequent MRIs showed darkening initially, then growth. Retrosigmoid surgery on April 26th, 2011 with Drs. Akagami and Westerberg at Vancouver General Hospital. Graduallly lost hearing after GK and now SSD but no other issues.

pjb

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Re: Dry eye after GK
« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2012, 10:53:32 am »
There are two reasons that may cause dry eye. One is damage to the facial nerve, which results in the lack of tear production (which is most likely what you have). The other is damage to the trigeminal nerve, which would cause reduced cornea sensation, meaning that the cornea doesn't "sense" that it is dry so does not give the proper signals for tear production.
Lots of us here on the forum experience this problem, no matter what the type of treatment we had.
It seems that your GK treatment affected one of these nerves. Whatever the cause is, you need to make sure that you keep your cornea propertly protected and moist.
You will have to experiment and see what type of drops work best for you. Since you need to use drops very frequently the preservative free drops, in the small vials are likely more suitable. There are quite a few brands, Celluvisc that Hrissy recommended is one that many people use. I like the Tears Naturale more. The thicker ointments are also good for extreme dryness and at night (although they do blur the vision).
If your cornea is extremely irritated right now, you may need some steroid drops (available by prescription, to help ease the irritation). Some people use glasses with side shields to protect from the dry air. There is a lot of information on the forum on various techniques.
As I said, lots of us have this problem, but once you find the right regimen for yourself it can be controlled.

Marianna

Just curious and not sure if I read it somewhere else so much information to read and retain ... I had severe dry eye prior to surgery I was wondering if that was a symptom ?

Best Wishes,
Diagnosed with a 1 cm. AN had Retrosigmoid
Approach surgery July of 2009, several problems after surgery.

mk

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Re: Dry eye after GK
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2012, 06:19:31 pm »
I also had severe dry eye before surgery (and radiation). It was because of the reduced cornea sensation (I also had numbness on my AN side) - this is what led me to the diagnosis in the first place. My large AN was impacting the trigeminal nerve.
After surgery feeling was fully restored to my face and my cornea. However because of minor damage to the facial nerve, my eye does not tear, so it is dry. Oh well, what can you do, I guess I traded one for the other  ::). At least I got rid of the tumor.

Marianna
GK on April 23rd 2008 for 2.9 cm AN at Toronto Western Hospital. Subsequent MRIs showed darkening initially, then growth. Retrosigmoid surgery on April 26th, 2011 with Drs. Akagami and Westerberg at Vancouver General Hospital. Graduallly lost hearing after GK and now SSD but no other issues.

 


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