Category Archives: eye exams

Isn’t diabetes enough?

We see the eye doctor on a regular basis. Well we did until we moved. We had a fabulous, exceptionally thorough optometrist previously. Each year my son and I went to see her. I went because I am blind as a bat and too chicken to see about laser treatment and my son went in order to keep on top of possible diabetes complications. 

I knew eventually we would need to find a new eye person and we did.  My son’s diabetes clinic set us up with a pediatric opthamologist.  Today was the appointment.  I expected it to be short. The sign said to expect 1-2 hour appointment length or more if you were a new patient.  Holy crap! We were going to have to camp out and I didn’t have a book to read! 

Our appointment was at 8:30am.  The doctor was late.  We finally got into the office and the exam began. My son did poorly. He had trouble with the largest of print.  Things were not looking good. Part way through he pulled out his glucometer.  Crap (again!).  Highs (or lows) would impair his vision.  He had been high the day before after breakfast.  How the heck were we going to know if he needed glasses or not? He was high.  How do you schedule an appointment for when your bg levels are perfect?? Diabetes ruins everything.

I had not really thought about diabetes messing with an eye exam before.  My kids did not inherit my poor eyesight and I never think of something else being wrong. In my mind, the opthamologist was about diabetes not eye sight. There had been close calls before–“we will watch this but he will probably need glasses later.”  but they had never amounted to anything.  Was today going to be different? 

My son had his eyes dilated, she re-examined him and decided that he would see for another day.  His eyes are not 20/20. They are a little bit worse but not enough to worry about.  She left it up to us to discuss and decide what to do.  I asked if getting glasses now would prevent further deterioration of his eyes.  She said no. 

As we got into the car at the end of the appointment, I asked my son what he thought. He said that there was NO way he was having glasses, contacts or anything else.  He could see. He could see the writing at school. They had said before that he may need glasses but his eyes were better at the next appointment. Today was no different. He would not need glasses. He had diabetes. One thing in life was plenty. 

Well, I asked didn’t I?  I agreed that we would wait and see how things went. If he felt he couldn’t see, he was having problems at school or next year she said things were worse–glasses it would be. He was right though–shouldn’t one health issue be enough for any person?