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Crohn's Disease Forum » Extra Intestinal Manifestations » Eyes » Funky eye symptoms going on here, anyone else?


03-28-2012, 07:01 PM   #1
KellyMom
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Boston, MA
Funky eye symptoms going on here, anyone else?

Hi all,
I was recently diagnosed with Crohn's. I have had eye issues as long as I can remember, but I always wrote them off to allergies, dry eyes, etc. Well now here I read that Crohn's often has eye issues accompanying it. Great. So here is what I have going on. Curious to see if anyone else is experiencing this:
-my left eye has this sporadic flashing, like a camera flash, mostly at night or when I go from a light to dark room
-increasing difficulty with night driving, headlights bothering me
-dry, sore red eyes constantly
-frequent styes (spelling?), especially when I wore contacts, had to switch to glasses permanently
-feels like left eye has trouble focusing sometimes
I made an Opthalmologist appointment for April, to get all this checked. I think she specializes in autoimmune conditions in the eye, so that will be helpful. Just wondering especially about the flashing light thing, anyone else? Thanks!
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Living in the 'burbs of Boston
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Crohn's Dx, March 2012
Terminal Illeum thus far...
Prilosec 1/day
Pentasa 2/3x day
Still trying to make sense of all the supplement options
Hating my guts currently
03-29-2012, 07:49 AM   #2
Cathybiker
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Portland, Maine
Hi KellyMOM,
I was recently diagnosed with Microscopic colitis and my eyes have been bothering me as well. I do believe that there is a connection! I don't have the flashes but have many of the other symptoms that you list, especially the difficulties with focusing. My left eye is frequently unfocused, to the point that print on my computer screen is blurry and print in a book is all but impossible for me to read. My green eyes have always been sensitive to sunlight but they are even more so now and driving at dusk/night is a challenge. I have an appt. with an optometrist at the end of April. That's great that you've found someone who specializes in autoimmune disorders. Keep us posted on what happens @ your appt.
03-29-2012, 11:19 AM   #3
KellyMom
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Boston, MA
Cathybiker,
I have green eyes too (and fair skin). Wonder if that makes it worse combined with the Crohn's? Thanks for the info! I hope your eyes are feeling better soon!
03-29-2012, 08:56 PM   #4
David
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Location: Naples, Florida
The flashing is a little concerning as that makes me wonder about retinal issues but I'm sure you're going to be fine. I'm really glad you have an appointment with an opthamologist specializing in immune issues.

Cathy, most optometrists aren't going to know about such things as microscopic colitis. If you're able to, I'd suggest getting in to see an opthamologist. And even then, check and see what they know about microscopic colitis. I went to one and he was pretty useless. I have Lymphocytic Colitis (one of the forms of Microscopic Colitis) and my right eye is giving me all kinds of trouble
03-29-2012, 10:40 PM   #5
Irene3
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For me it's the left, or both. No flashing lights though, but like a dull pain behind them. And sometimes vision, but it usually comes with headache. I have dry eye too, and with contacts have to use eyedrops or my vision becomes more blurry then without contacts in. But Pred can cause a pressure behind the eye too. It's great your getting them looked at, I did the same. My headaches concern me though, and sometimes I feel like it could be related to my eyes/Pred/crohns, and other days, it's like I'm completely dehydrated, and don't even want to be up and about, cos eyes feel funny, ears sometimes too, then I take flu capsules and try to drink heaps of water so i don't feel like Iv got a flu congestion headache.
Good luck at your appointment, hope your feeling better soon. xoxo
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03-30-2012, 04:21 AM   #6
Cathybiker
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The flashing is a little concerning as that makes me wonder about retinal issues but I'm sure you're going to be fine. I'm really glad you have an appointment with an opthamologist specializing in immune issues.

Cathy, most optometrists aren't going to know about such things as microscopic colitis. If you're able to, I'd suggest getting in to see an opthamologist. And even then, check and see what they know about microscopic colitis. I went to one and he was pretty useless. I have Lymphocytic Colitis (one of the forms of Microscopic Colitis) and my right eye is giving me all kinds of trouble
Hi David,
Good idea. I will see if the office has an opthamologist. I doubt that I'm going to be able to find one around here that has experience with MC. Maybe I can check with my GI?
03-30-2012, 09:05 AM   #7
David
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That's a great idea. I think I'll do the same.
03-30-2012, 03:09 PM   #8
Judith
 
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Location: California
Hi KellyMom,
I just wanted to share what drugs worked for my eyes because it took me a long long time to find and I am really happy with the outcome. Hopefully it may help you too.

First, I did not have the flashing lights issues but I did have the red, itchy, swollen eyes to the point that my eye constantly felt like it was being rubbed with sandpaper...... it kind of was actually. My eyelids on the inside were so swollen and bumpy it looked like I had acne inside of my eyelid. I was also having to wear only glasses instead of contact lenses.

My eye doctor was great. First, he realized that I was allergic to my contact lenses and switched my brand. He also gave me a prescription for Lotemax eyedrops. They are a corticosteroid eyedrop that I took 2-4x per day. It worked VERY well. But it was also VERY expensive ($150 for 5 milliliters). I am now on a maintainence drop called Bepreve which is also very expensive ($150 for 10 milliliters). It works at maintaining my eye inflammation pretty well and I am happy with it. I can now wear my contact lenses. YaY!

I am also very glad you are seeing an eye doctor that specializes in autoimmune diseases. If they give you a Lotemax prescription... it is expensive but it really worked for me.
04-03-2012, 11:34 AM   #9
Nyx
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I was recently diagnosed with rosacea blepharitis conjunctivitis along with a corneal ulcer. My opthalmologist recommended warm compresses twice a day to calm down the redness and bumpiness under the eyelids. He said that most Crohn's patients should do this daily as it prevents the blepharitis from flaring and it just feels good on the eyes anyway! I'm being treated with an antibiotic ointment, a drop, and oral antibiotics for the the ulcer. It's been going on for 7 weeks now, so I'm hoping it will improve soon! I have another appointment with the doctor tomorrow so we'll see how it's going.

I hope you get some answers and some relief! Eye problems are horrible and uncomfortable.
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Crohn's Diagnosis: May 2006
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04-03-2012, 11:50 AM   #10
David
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I'm going to try those warm compresses Nyx, thank you. My inner eyelids are a mess so it'd be nice if that helps.
04-12-2012, 12:19 PM   #11
Cathybiker
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Portland, Maine
I was recently diagnosed with rosacea blepharitis conjunctivitis along with a corneal ulcer. My opthalmologist recommended warm compresses twice a day to calm down the redness and bumpiness under the eyelids. He said that most Crohn's patients should do this daily as it prevents the blepharitis from flaring and it just feels good on the eyes anyway! I'm being treated with an antibiotic ointment, a drop, and oral antibiotics for the the ulcer. It's been going on for 7 weeks now, so I'm hoping it will improve soon! I have another appointment with the doctor tomorrow so we'll see how it's going.

I hope you get some answers and some relief! Eye problems are horrible and uncomfortable.

Hi Nyx, KellyMom and David,
Just got back from my opthamalogist appointment and I was diagnosed with blepharitis as well. The doctor said that she has seen several people diagnosed with Colitis have eye inflammation problems especially when they are flaring. I will be using a steroid ointment for 4 days and then an eye drop for 7 and then will be back to see her in 10 days. She will at that time likely be prescribing glasses but she wanted to decrease the inflammation first before dealing with my eyesight issues. She also questioned whether or not I was seeing an autoimmune specialist. Anyone here seeing that sort of a specialist?
04-12-2012, 12:44 PM   #12
KellyMom
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Boston, MA
I am not seeing an autoimmune specialist, but the Opthal. I go to specializes in Autoimmune disorders of the eye. If you can find one that does that, that would be great. An Autoimmune Specialist sounds like it would be a wonderful help, never heard of one though! Curious to see if anyone else has one on here. I was also given the Blepharitis Dx and she said it is very common with Crohn's.
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