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plm 03-01-2005 02:02 PM

please describe what your "dry eyes" feel like
This may sound like a stupid question, but I am sincerely wanting to know exactly what your dry eyes symptoms are. My doctor diagnosed dry eyes today, and I don't think my symptoms sound like what his pamphlet says.

I've had problems with itchy eyes for about 6 months. I really think this is related to a cat that "adopted" me about that time. I was letting her in the house and found my eyes were very itchy. Now that I keep her outside, it feels better, except when I get around her a lot.

For the record, I've been on allergy shots for 1.5 years because of a breathing problem. I tested allergic to cats, but not highly.

My eyeballs themselves do not bother me. It is the upper and lower lids that itch. It's the skin AROUND my eyes that itches, my eyeballs are fine. Not red, irritated or anything.

The dry eye pamphlet talks about scratchy eyes, burning, stinging. Eyes that get bothered when you get in windy weather. It sounds like they are talking about the actual eyeball, not the skin around it. My eyes don't have these problems.

I've looked at quite a few sites on the internet, and they all say the same thing. I can't figure out if they mean the eyeball, or skin around it!

Anyways, I'm in a quandry wondering whether this is "dry eyes" or an allergic reaction to this cat! I could understand it being an allergy because the membranes around your eyes and nose get irritated by allergies. Not your actual eyeballs. You can sneeze and get swollen nasal passages (sounds like a commercial!).

By the way, I put the artificial tear eyedrops sample he gave me in my eyes when I got home, and I don't notice any difference. It's been about an hour or so. THe skin around my eyes always feels a little itchy. And if I dare touch it and scratch, there will be hell to pay. So I just try to stand it and keep my fingers away from my eyes!

So if anybody (or lots of bodies) would please give me detailed information on exactly how your dry eyes feel, I would SO appreciate it.

Jeene 03-01-2005 07:38 PM

Re: please describe what your "dry eyes" feel like
[QUOTE=plm] My doctor diagnosed dry eyes today, and I don't think my symptoms sound like what his pamphlet says.[/QUOTE]

How did the doctor diagnosis your dry eyes? Did he do a basic Schirmer test?

It sounds to me as if your eye problem is due to the cat allergy. I've had dry eyes for 7-8 years - and I don't have any itching AROUND the eyes. It's mainly a feeling of very tired eyes with burning and sometimes a foreign body sensation, and blurred vision that's relieved temporarily with lubricant drops.

You might try an antihistamine eye drop that you can get over-the-counter - and see if that helps.

plm 03-01-2005 08:00 PM

Re: please describe what your "dry eyes" feel like
Thanks for the reply. The technician put some little papers in my eyes (had something like strings hanging down) for about 30 seconds, then said I had dry eyes. I looked on the internet for information on these tests, and what I saw said that they leave these things in your eyes for 5 minutes. This doctor was running about 1.5 hours behind today, and I got the feeling my appointment was very rushed. He kept looking at his watch.

This evening I handled the cat a little bit. Then washed my hands. In a very short time, my eyes were itching! Not the eyeballs, the skin around them. And the area below the tear duct, about 1/2" down. I'm no expert, but I'm thinking allergies are the problem.

I found one website today written by an eye doctor. He said he has seven questions he asks patients. All about the actual symptoms, like where it itches, when, etc. Do your eyes bother you at night, during the day, etc. He said "dry eyes" is a catch-all phrase that applies to many different conditions. He likes to pin point the exact condition. Then he explained different conditions. Sure wish that doctor was near me. At least on the internet, he sounds thorough and concerned about the patient.

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