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    Old 02-01-2019, 06:05 AM   #1
    Bloombox
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    Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Hey there,

    F33, hypochondriac, schizophrenic, general anxiety, highly depressive... But otherwise healthy I guess. Currently taking Zoloft and Lysanxia.

    Long story short: I see double on my left lateral gaze. It's also present on the right but a lot weaker. It didn't happen overnight either. I've suffered from positional vertigo since march after what was diagnosed as BPPV which evolved into chronic dizziness/disequilibrium/vertigo depending on the situation.

    In my anxiety I linked dizziness and nystagmus and kept on looking for it on my own for months using a camera. To make things even worse I started to develop some kind of random blurry vision and accomodation problems after taking Zoloft, especially when trying to shave my armpits... Worse on the left that the right. It hurt, my eyes just couldn't focus and go that "left". I also felt like my left eye was lagging behind the other one sometimes. This was this summer.

    In my compulsive search for my nystagmus (while lowering Zoloft as the drug doesn't suit me) I triggered one when looking as far as I could on the left. I kept on doing it. It hurt. I started seeing double on my extreme lateral left gaze after that. It was in October.
    Since then I can't help but stretch my eyes to check whether this diplopia is getting worse, and everytime I overdo myself (and it hurts a lot, believe me) the double vision chronically gets worse. My eyes are painful, turning them is painful, they water...

    Now it isn't my EXTREME gaze but close to it. I've had a ptosis on my left eyelid which has gotten worse, but the 3 GPs and my psychiatrist won't dare call that a ptosis as it isn't strong enough to impair my vision.

    As for double vision... Nobody's given my an explanation. I seem to have a full range of motion (there's like 1 millimeter of sclera left on the outside on both sides but I've been told it's normal), no esotropia or anything. I feel like I "damaged" my extraocular muscles or something but it's apparently not possible (my ophthalmologist said so). Yet I know my body, I know it got worse everytime I purposefully hurt myself as much as I could by moving them as far as I could.

    Now all I'm left with is pain, watering dry eyes and diplopia. I think I had already some kind of diplopia on my lateral gazes before but I'm not sure... I'm myopic and astigmatic.

    Any idea? Hurting myself? Trained myself to see double? It's become my #1 fear and obsession.

     
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    Old 02-01-2019, 10:11 AM   #2
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Go see a good ophthalmologist and make sure there is nothing wrong with your eyes... if they give you a clean bill of health, you know this is anxiety causing it. This is not something you can self diagnose.

    Your eyes are nothing to laugh at- get a good check up!
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    Old 02-01-2019, 10:34 AM   #3
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MSNik View Post
    Go see a good ophthalmologist and make sure there is nothing wrong with your eyes... if they give you a clean bill of health, you know this is anxiety causing it. This is not something you can self diagnose.

    Your eyes are nothing to laugh at- get a good check up!
    Well I did get a thorough check-up, including a look at my eye nerve using their machine and all... That's how I learned it was in the "extreme lateral gaze" - I didn't know the phrasing before. She said she didn't see anything wrong... Meanwhile I've seen GPs, some telling me about self-mutilation while telling me you can't damage your eyes stretching them the way I do even when it hurts a LOT.

    Nobody's arguing it is anxiety. Anxiety is what makes me hurt myself. The question would rather be whether I could be pulling a muscle (it hurts especially when I look far on both sides) or something...

    Last edited by Bloombox; 02-01-2019 at 10:48 AM.

     
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    Old 02-01-2019, 01:05 PM   #4
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Dear Bloom,

    Hon, of course pulling at the eyes or the skin around them can damage them.

    So far a doctor didn't find that you did permanent damage. That's all. You need to stop that behavior before you do permanent damage.. There is no way that anyone reading about it could know more than a doctor that saw you.

    Pulling or rubbing an eye or any body part has the potential to cause physical damage. You admit that you self-harm. It is not your eye or your skin that is the problem. The problem is what you tell yourself. We need to learn to tell ourselves the truth. The truth is you have been hurting your own body parts.

    Anxiety is very real, but it is an emotion, a feeling. Anxious feelings can cause one to do all sorts of self-damaging behaviors until you get in a habit of self-harm. Really if you cannot stop your habit of harm, you need to get help to stop dealing with anxiety by attacking your own self.

    Anxiety is an emotion. Anxiety is never a reason to harm your body. I understand that people do that sometimes. There was a time when I was pretty self-destructive to my own body before i got appropriate help. So I do understand.

    There are good therapists and so-so therapists. A good therapist can help you choose to stop punishing your own body over the things that you don't understand. But to find a good therapist you first need to accept that the problem you have is that you choose to hurt yourself. The same way you choose to harm yourself you can choose to take care of yourself. It is entirely our own choice.

    No one outside of ourselves can choose for us.
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    Old 02-02-2019, 12:22 AM   #5
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by yayagirl View Post
    Dear Bloom,

    Hon, of course pulling at the eyes or the skin around them can damage them.

    So far a doctor didn't find that you did permanent damage. That's all. You need to stop that behavior before you do permanent damage.. There is no way that anyone reading about it could know more than a doctor that saw you.

    Pulling or rubbing an eye or any body part has the potential to cause physical damage. You admit that you self-harm. It is not your eye or your skin that is the problem. The problem is what you tell yourself. We need to learn to tell ourselves the truth. The truth is you have been hurting your own body parts.

    Anxiety is very real, but it is an emotion, a feeling. Anxious feelings can cause one to do all sorts of self-damaging behaviors until you get in a habit of self-harm. Really if you cannot stop your habit of harm, you need to get help to stop dealing with anxiety by attacking your own self.

    Anxiety is an emotion. Anxiety is never a reason to harm your body. I understand that people do that sometimes. There was a time when I was pretty self-destructive to my own body before i got appropriate help. So I do understand.

    There are good therapists and so-so therapists. A good therapist can help you choose to stop punishing your own body over the things that you don't understand. But to find a good therapist you first need to accept that the problem you have is that you choose to hurt yourself. The same way you choose to harm yourself you can choose to take care of yourself. It is entirely our own choice.

    No one outside of ourselves can choose for us.
    Thank you for your kind words!

    I really don't know about other people, but in my case "anxiety" doesn't sum it up all that well. As I said my psychiatric issues go way further than that. I just CAN'T help turning my eyes as far as I could with the excuse to check on my diplopia. I'm not doing it purposefully. It's compulsive. It hurts like hell and I ask for more.

    A good example would be this morning: I unwillingly checked on my left lateral gaze. I saw as double as usual and it hurt right here and then. I stopped... And tried again. My eye felt stuck. I suddenly couldn't move it as far as I could a second ago. It hurt for sure, but it especially felt... I don't know, paralyzed? Tired?

    I waited a couple minutes and tried again. I had regained my strength but it hurt even faster than before and got "stuck" even faster. Doing that thing again and again does have an impact, I know it, I feel it, and yet doctors tell me it's impossible.

    You can't hurt your extraocular muscles that way. Especially not create any kind of diplopia. And yet that's how I've experienced things.

    By the way when I say "stuck" nothing obvious shows on the outside. It just feels like... An overused muscle? Like a tired, painful leg?

    I have a very good therapist, a psychiatrist and a couple of GPs following me. Yet I'm told it's nothing without any explanation... Worsening diplopia seems to be linked with terrible things though, especially when you get it on both sides (although a LOT weaker to the right). But nobody's worried. I'm told both this is self-harm and "you can't hurt your extraocular muscles lady!"

    Someone told me I may "trained" my eyes to see double, like a orthoptic session that would've gone awry. That I decompensated a problem that was already compensated.. There are a few stories like that.

     
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    Old 02-02-2019, 07:15 AM   #6
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Dear Bloom,

    This is how I see it ~
    From the way you put it, you or the doctors or all of you are in my opinion confusing apples and oranges so to speak. You know you have the compulsions, and you keep doing things that 'might' not cause 'actual damage' or 'didn't yet cause permanent damage' but does cause pain and mental distress at the very least, because you admit it does cause that, and still you seek reassurance about your eyes and also your compulsions.

    My personal experience with fear and compulsion is that we personally do have an internal sense of when we have gone over the top out of our fear and compulsions. We each, alone, make value judgements about what we want in our own lives, and we are each personally responsible to set our own limits. Whether we draw the lines from good judgement is mostly up to each individual, and we learn by getting consequences. This is how life is for each and every person. We get what we choose or else others might at some point use the law to step in and make that choice for us.

    Whether someone else takes control of our choices rather depends on how far we go in harming ourselves or others. We need to consider whether we want to retain freedom to choose or to risk having others step in and take control over us.

    So, hon, iwhen in a situation like yours, I would ask myself, just how much pain and vision loss do I want to cause myself? Other people can't draw the line of personal responsibility for us unless they imprison us, tie us up, or drug us. So for me, there came a time when I saw this reality and I chose to be free and drug free, which meant I took control of my own self and made better choices so that I did not hurt myself or those to whom I mattered.

    I was about age 18, when after a motorcycle accident that was completely the other driver's fault, on my own I began to pay attention and to draw limits of what I allowed myself to do or be involved with. That included what I ate, when I rested, what I did to or for myself, and who I would be involved with. Others around me depended on others to make their choices for them. I personally didn't want that.

    So, to me it all boils down to us taking care of our own body parts, hon.
    If you think pulling at your eyes is OK, healthy or helpful, then that's your choice. So far no one is stopping you. No one on the internet can stop you that is for sure. Fingers and toes bend certain ways too, but push them too far and they weaken or break. It is the same with your eyeballs.

    You know there are limits in this life, and you do still have the right to push the limits. It doesn't matter what you call it. No one has locked you up or put you in a straight jacket, so you can do as you please.

    But I think you know you can also take better care of yourself and your body parts. I think you can be kind to your body parts and even leave them alone. And I believe you will when you want to.

    Love,
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    Old 02-02-2019, 07:51 AM   #7
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Quote:
    Now all I'm left with is pain, watering dry eyes and diplopia. I think I had already some kind of diplopia on my lateral gazes before but I'm not sure... I'm myopic and astigmatic.
    As silly as this may sound; you might try moisture eye drops (my preference is Systane Gel Drops), to see if it helps your eyes in anyway. The Gel Drops can temporarily cause blurriness.

    You might consider seeing a Neuro-Ophthalmologist for a more complete exam. You will more than likely need a Drs. referral to a Neuro-Ophthalmologist and your wait to see one might be lengthy as this is a very specialized field.

    If I have understood correctly your Ophthalmologist did diagnose you with diplopia upon examination? Bloombox, I have Diplopia, it affects one eye muscle and is only noticeable when looking in one direction. Although I use diplopia to describe what I have mine is actually called ~ Internuclear ophthalmoplegia (INO) and nystagmus.

    I had seen two Ophthalmologist's that failed to recognize what the problem was. I was referred to a Neuro-Ophthalmologist who figured it out quite quickly.

    The reason for your double vision very well may be of no concern as you have been told. Anxiety and some medications could certainly be part of the problem as well as being obsessive about your eyes.

    I wish you well.

     
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    Old 02-02-2019, 10:03 AM   #8
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by yayagirl View Post
    Dear Bloom,

    This is how I see it ~
    From the way you put it, you or the doctors or all of you are in my opinion confusing apples and oranges so to speak. You know you have the compulsions, and you keep doing things that 'might' not cause 'actual damage' or 'didn't yet cause permanent damage' but does cause pain and mental distress at the very least, because you admit it does cause that, and still you seek reassurance about your eyes and also your compulsions.

    My personal experience with fear and compulsion is that we personally do have an internal sense of when we have gone over the top out of our fear and compulsions. We each, alone, make value judgements about what we want in our own lives, and we are each personally responsible to set our own limits. Whether we draw the lines from good judgement is mostly up to each individual, and we learn by getting consequences. This is how life is for each and every person. We get what we choose or else others might at some point use the law to step in and make that choice for us.

    Whether someone else takes control of our choices rather depends on how far we go in harming ourselves or others. We need to consider whether we want to retain freedom to choose or to risk having others step in and take control over us.

    So, hon, iwhen in a situation like yours, I would ask myself, just how much pain and vision loss do I want to cause myself? Other people can't draw the line of personal responsibility for us unless they imprison us, tie us up, or drug us. So for me, there came a time when I saw this reality and I chose to be free and drug free, which meant I took control of my own self and made better choices so that I did not hurt myself or those to whom I mattered.

    I was about age 18, when after a motorcycle accident that was completely the other driver's fault, on my own I began to pay attention and to draw limits of what I allowed myself to do or be involved with. That included what I ate, when I rested, what I did to or for myself, and who I would be involved with. Others around me depended on others to make their choices for them. I personally didn't want that.

    So, to me it all boils down to us taking care of our own body parts, hon.
    If you think pulling at your eyes is OK, healthy or helpful, then that's your choice. So far no one is stopping you. No one on the internet can stop you that is for sure. Fingers and toes bend certain ways too, but push them too far and they weaken or break. It is the same with your eyeballs.

    You know there are limits in this life, and you do still have the right to push the limits. It doesn't matter what you call it. No one has locked you up or put you in a straight jacket, so you can do as you please.

    But I think you know you can also take better care of yourself and your body parts. I think you can be kind to your body parts and even leave them alone. And I believe you will when you want to.

    Love,
    Thank you again... Very inspiring. It's just the fact that I'm being told that
    A) I'm self mutilating and harming myself
    B) You can't harm yourself this way

    I guess I really have to work on myself... Thanks again.

     
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    Old 02-02-2019, 10:05 AM   #9
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Snoopy61 View Post
    As silly as this may sound; you might try moisture eye drops (my preference is Systane Gel Drops), to see if it helps your eyes in anyway. The Gel Drops can temporarily cause blurriness.

    You might consider seeing a Neuro-Ophthalmologist for a more complete exam. You will more than likely need a Drs. referral to a Neuro-Ophthalmologist and your wait to see one might be lengthy as this is a very specialized field.

    If I have understood correctly your Ophthalmologist did diagnose you with diplopia upon examination? Bloombox, I have Diplopia, it affects one eye muscle and is only noticeable when looking in one direction. Although I use diplopia to describe what I have mine is actually called ~ Internuclear ophthalmoplegia (INO) and nystagmus.

    I had seen two Ophthalmologist's that failed to recognize what the problem was. I was referred to a Neuro-Ophthalmologist who figured it out quite quickly.

    The reason for your double vision very well may be of no concern as you have been told. Anxiety and some medications could certainly be part of the problem as well as being obsessive about your eyes.

    I wish you well.
    I wouldn't give a damn about INO as annoying as it is. I'm mostly anxious about the so-called dreadful brain tumor. Especially since I have diplopia on both sides.

    I wanted to be referred to a neuro-ophtalmo and chickened out. I am TERRIFED of doctors. Just seeing my psychiatrist takes a huge toll on me every month.

     
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    Old 02-02-2019, 06:30 PM   #10
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    ;5492004]Thank you again... Very inspiring. It's just the fact that I'm being told that
    A) I'm self mutilating and harming myself
    B) You can't harm yourself this way

    I guess I really have to work on myself... Thanks again.[/QUOTE]




    Dear Bloombox,

    IMO, we all need to work on ourselves.
    No one is under our skin but ourselves.

    Still, I think getting feedback is very helpful. I listen to my doctors and they listen to me. Good doctors will always listen to you and give thoughtful feedback.
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    Old 02-03-2019, 07:36 AM   #11
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Bloombox View Post
    I wouldn't give a damn about INO as annoying as it is. I'm mostly anxious about the so-called dreadful brain tumor. Especially since I have diplopia on both sides.

    I wanted to be referred to a neuro-ophtalmo and chickened out. I am TERRIFED of doctors. Just seeing my psychiatrist takes a huge toll on me every month.
    The most common fear that people with anxiety have is having a brain tumor. If you have a brain tumor there would be much more going on than double vision ~ my aunt died from a brain tumor.

    If you want to truly know if there is a medical cause for your double vision the best thing you can do is seek the help of those in the medical profession for testing. Drs. are like all the rest of us; they can deal with anxiety, depression, health issues, family problems, and more.

    There is nothing wrong with my eye. Internuclear Ophthalmoplegia is due to a miscommunication within the Central Nervous System which includes the brain. The brain is not able to send the proper messages to my eye, hence Internuclear Ophthalmoplegia. I am very fortunate as the double vision could be worse and effect both eyes, although overtime it's possible for this to get worse and it's also possible for it to effect my other eye as well. Just to be clear I do not have a brain tumor.

     
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    Old 02-05-2019, 07:03 AM   #12
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Snoopy61 View Post
    The most common fear that people with anxiety have is having a brain tumor. If you have a brain tumor there would be much more going on than double vision ~ my aunt died from a brain tumor.

    If you want to truly know if there is a medical cause for your double vision the best thing you can do is seek the help of those in the medical profession for testing. Drs. are like all the rest of us; they can deal with anxiety, depression, health issues, family problems, and more.

    There is nothing wrong with my eye. Internuclear Ophthalmoplegia is due to a miscommunication within the Central Nervous System which includes the brain. The brain is not able to send the proper messages to my eye, hence Internuclear Ophthalmoplegia. I am very fortunate as the double vision could be worse and effect both eyes, although overtime it's possible for this to get worse and it's also possible for it to effect my other eye as well. Just to be clear I do not have a brain tumor.
    Meaning one of your eye seems more or less paralyzed, right? Lagging and unable to fully adduct or abduct?

    I am just curious as Dr.Internet always depicts everything in black OR white. They never talk about milder cases.

    I am sorry for your aunt... As for me, I stated I have been suffering from positional vertigo since last March as well as dizziness when lying on my left side (not when I turn but when I stay that way).

     
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    Old 02-05-2019, 09:43 AM   #13
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Bloombox View Post
    Meaning one of your eye seems more or less paralyzed, right?
    No. My left eye can move in all directions, I do get pains in both eyes with or without movement. My eyes do not work together. When I look to the right my left eye blurs and sees double and cannot sustain looking to the right, the left eyeball shakes (nystagmus) and cannot sustain the right gaze. This is obvious upon exam by my Neurologist, Ophthalmologist and Neuro-Ophthalmologist. Prisms on my right eye glass lens helped.

    I have Multiple Sclerosis(MS) and that is the cause for my Internuclear Ophthalmoplegia. Due to the multitude of symptoms and the severity of them my Neurologist first suspected a brain tumor, this was 6 months after my aunt passed away from her brain tumor. Many years later I was once again suspected of having a brain tumor, although MS was the most likely cause.

    Bloombox, if you fear a brain tumor the only way to give yourself some peace is to have a MRI of the brain.

     
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    Old 02-05-2019, 09:51 AM   #14
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Snoopy61 View Post
    No. My left eye can move in all directions, I do get pains in both eyes with or without movement. My eyes do not work together. When I look to the right my left eye blurs and sees double and cannot sustain looking to the right, the left eyeball shakes (nystagmus) and cannot sustain the right gaze. This is obvious upon exam by my Neurologist, Ophthalmologist and Neuro-Ophthalmologist. Prisms on my right eye glass lens helped.

    I have Multiple Sclerosis(MS) and that is the cause for my Internuclear Ophthalmoplegia. Due to the multitude of symptoms and the severity of them my Neurologist first suspected a brain tumor, this was 6 months after my aunt passed away from her brain tumor. Many years later I was once again suspected of having a brain tumor, although MS was the most likely cause.

    Bloombox, if you fear a brain tumor the only way to give yourself some peace is to have a MRI of the brain.
    Thank you very much for your answer... I thought you had an isolated INO.

    And... Yeah, seeing doctors, I guess so... Thank you!

     
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    Old 02-08-2019, 07:04 AM   #15
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    Re: Double vision (diplopia) on lateral gazes: meds or pulled muscle?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by yayagirl View Post
    Dear Bloom,

    Hon, of course pulling at the eyes or the skin around them can damage them.

    So far a doctor didn't find that you did permanent damage. That's all. You need to stop that behavior before you do permanent damage.. There is no way that anyone reading about it could know more than a doctor that saw you.

    Pulling or rubbing an eye or any body part has the potential to cause physical damage. You admit that you self-harm. It is not your eye or your skin that is the problem. The problem is what you tell yourself. We need to learn to tell ourselves the truth. The truth is you have been hurting your own body parts.

    Anxiety is very real, but it is an emotion, a feeling. Anxious feelings can cause one to do all sorts of self-damaging behaviors until you get in a habit of self-harm. Really if you cannot stop your habit of harm, you need to get help to stop dealing with anxiety by attacking your own self.

    Anxiety is an emotion. Anxiety is never a reason to harm your body. I understand that people do that sometimes. There was a time when I was pretty self-destructive to my own body before i got appropriate help. So I do understand.

    There are good therapists and so-so therapists. A good therapist can help you choose to stop punishing your own body over the things that you don't understand. But to find a good therapist you first need to accept that the problem you have is that you choose to hurt yourself. The same way you choose to harm yourself you can choose to take care of yourself. It is entirely our own choice.

    No one outside of ourselves can choose for us.
    While reading your message again I realized my wording may have been bad regarding what I do with my eyes. I am not touching them with my hands. I haven't (except the occasional rubbings). I just started to look as far as I could on the sides, eventually triggering this diplopia.

    When I say "stretching", I mean "stretching my extraocular muscles". Not me pinching my eyes with my fingers. And I've been told that forcing ductions this way doesn't do anything bad. Yet it hurts.

    I've stopped looking too far to the sides now, been "off" that for a week. It still hurts when I look sideways, be it the eye itself or the muscles (it usually is the muscles). As for the diplopia, it seems to fluctuate all day long. It is always there mind you, but there are times it is more noticeable. If I squint or something it disappears or gets better.

    I'm starting to think that pain hints as muscle pain and thus issue, this causing diplopia on lateral gazes and accomodation problems when switching from far distance to close distance (especially when looking from my phone to something far on either side).

     
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