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Adaptive Cycling: Handcycles, Amputee Adaptation, Visual Impairment, and Other Needs Have a need for adaptive equipment to ride to compensate for a disability or loss of limb or function? This area is for discussion among those of us in the cycling world that are coming back from traumatic circumstances and tell the world, "No, you are not going to beat me down!"

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Old 07-02-14, 07:18 PM   #1
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Glaucoma gloom

Moderators, if you feel this is in the wrong place, feel free to move it.

My handle on Bikeforums is Powerhouse. I introduced myself rather fully when I started the thread "DO YOU HAVE A DISABILITY?" as I have more than one. Throughout the years, however, I managed to cope with and sometimes overcome my shortcomings.

But there are also times which present longstanding setbacks. One of which has to do with Glaucoma, a visual disability that I have. Glaucoma is the buildup of too much fluid in the eyes to the point that the pressure affects other parts of a person's head. If someone had too little fluid...there are other problems that I can't begin to describe. One can take eyedrops to combat Glaucoma and things usually remain at a stable level.

In recent weeks and months, my eye pressure level has been going up and down like a roller coaster. My eye doctor being unavailable to work on me, he put me on a medication, contacted a colleague and told me to board a bus in Portland, ME to go to Boston, MA. When I arrived at his colleague's office, he had a surgical team ready and waiting in a nearby operating room. Before any operating was to be done, another eye pressure level was taken:
The result was normal. With that, the doctor sent me back to Maine.

Although I celebrated the results when I arrived home, that wasn't the end.
Weekly tests showed that the pressure levels didn't remain stable. A date for surgery
was at first scheduled for July 10. It was later changed to July 3

This meant limmitations in hiking, swimming, bicycling, and other activities while I recouperate after the process. I will have the use of only one eye which I can't even read with. Furtermore, this ends the bicycling season for me.

But I will still be here when I recover. Perhaps I'll hear from some of you sometime.
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Old 07-02-14, 08:27 PM   #2
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Can't think of a better place on the site for this thread.

I suffer from Glaucoma as well and my "cycling season" ended last year when My Eye Guy advised that riding in traffic was no longer an option. He did give me the green light to do so a few years back when he told me to quit driving- a way to reduce the risk of developing Diabetes (mother is Type II). There are no MUPs to speak of in my town (nor public transit), so I'm basically walking everywhere unaided- he does want me to learn how to use the cane and I've got an application in with Pilot Dogs for a critter.

He got me into a new start-up clinic at NSU- not sure if this will benefit me more or the students/staff- but my first visit with them is next week.

Side note: I don't know about you, but a lot of people tell me I should be smoking pot 'for pain management'. Thing is, the pain is tolerable (though I do have some bouts that aren't) and I talked to My Eye Guy about it. He advised against it because it can cause the blood pressure to oscillate, which in turn can do the same to the IOP and that ain't good (for me at least).
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Old 07-19-14, 01:44 PM   #3
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Regular quarterly follow ups at VA Med center Glaucoma Clinic in Portland Oregon ..
For chronic control I use 2 Eye drops night & day .. Lanoprost and Timolol Maleate, by name..

When I needed reading glasses in my 40's I got to see a Recent graduate (newest test equipment) ,
& partner in a clinic with an .. experienced eye surgeon who did a mechanical pressure relief screen ,
called a trabeculectomy. (2X)

THE VAMC-PDX is benefitting from a concentration of teaching hospitals on the hill

OHSU is connected by a bridge to the VA , 2nd floor of the VAMC ..

have a 2 hour trip there and 2 hours back,

but Oregon Veterans benefit from the VAMC funding Med shuttle vans
and the DAV scheduling volunteer drivers to run them .

now my house is a couple blocks from the parking lot where they start from.
8 hour round trip, $50 Co pay for each exam ..

Last edited by fietsbob; 03-13-15 at 12:51 PM.
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Old 03-13-15, 08:58 AM   #4
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Wow, looks like we could start a Mr. MaGoo fan club here!

I've had wretched eyesight all of my life. Born with cataracts; Had operations when I was a kid, to remove the cataracts; but the way they did it in those days, the operations caused glaucoma and many other complications. One eye went completely blind a few years ago; so I'm down to one peeper; which had been staying pretty stable with glaucoma medication- but recently my eye pressure went dangerously high, and since I'm allergic to virtually all other glaucoma meds, except for the two which I'm already on, my options are limited- as surgery would be very risky, with this being my only seeing eye. Luckily, the pressure has since come down a little- and hopefully will get back to normal and stay there- but the threat of future blindness is becoming a nagging concern. I come from a family of long-livers, and I really can't fathom having to live for 35 more years if i were to be blind! (It would mean a total cessation of normal life for me- as I'm a loner, and only care to live out in the country. The idea of not being able to drive; nor even ride my bike, nor even being able to mow my grass, or go shopping or fix things around the place, is just unfathomable. I'd be helpless! -and I don't have the guts nor inclination to blow my brains out.... )
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