Eye (red) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Since the mid to late 90s, I began to notice the dryness in my eyes. Nothing too serious, just a lot of redness and itching. Plagued by allergies, I attributed my eye symptoms to that and treated it with allergy eye drops. I saw an optometrist at that time for a regular eyeglass exam, and he tested my eyes with a type of litmus paper. It was positive for having “dry eyes”. He gave me a form of prescription eye drops and sent me on my way.
Despite the attempts to alleviate my problem, the dry eye symptoms persisted and actually became worse by early 2001. At this point, they would burn and felt a little scratchy—like the finest of sand paper grades. I began to excessively use lubricant eye drops—at least once, sometimes twice every 2 to 3 hours a day. I kept a bottle in my purse, in my car, and in my refrigerator for relief from the burning. I continued using allergy drops as well. At night, I would apply cold packs for relief from the swelling that I began to notice at the end of each day.
By 2002, I acquired a job requiring me to constantly use a computer. Despite having had tear duct plugs, lubricant eye drops, and nighttime eye gel lubricant, my symptoms became worse. My eyes would redden so badly that my co-workers would comment on what was wrong? I couldn’t wear makeup for long periods of time, as the redness would become worse. My eye lids were mildly swollen and made my eyes look much smaller. The burning at the end of the day again called for cold packs. Assuming that I would just have to live with this, I went on with my life, my eye lubricants, allergy eye drops, and cold packs. When I would cry, my eyes would swell so badly, that despite the use of ice packs, it would take a good 24 hours to get my eyelids back to “normal.”
In the winter of 2005, I miraculously was captured by a building’s address that read “Azman Eye Care DRY EYE CENTER”. I made an appointment and Dr. Irwin Azman himself called me to ask me what my situation was—and he was in California at the time! I was very impressed with this type of attention.
After the most thorough eye exam I have ever experienced, I eagerly listened as Dr. Irwin Azman specifically explained every test result; the anatomy and physiology of the eyelid and tear duct system, and best of all, the treatment of my dry eye condition. Within 4 weeks, I began to notice 70% improvement with my dry eye symptoms. My eyes felt less like sandpaper, the redness was not as apparent, the itching was gone, and the burning had subsided. The most evident sign of improvement was the lack of my need for excessive lubricant eye drops AND allergy eye drops. By 6 weeks, I was 90 to 95% symptom free. By far, the most superb result was when I cry, whether a soft cry or hard cry, my eyes never swell at all.
At my 8-week visit, I was so pleased.
I am eternally grateful to Dr. Irwin Azman for introducing me to the most effective treatment for my dry eye condition. My eyes are at last relieved!
-Martha W. Baltimore, Maryland