Having taken steroids and immunosuppressants for 5 years now, I have developed dry eyes and blepheritis.
My Blepheritis is, I believe, as a result of taking immunosuppressants and gives me itchy, red rimmed eyes. My dry eyes are caused, I believe, by the steroids (which has also given me dry skin and dry hair – what a nightmare!) and the symptoms include a constant feeling of having ‘something’ in my eye, like grit, and a greater sensitivity to glare, as well as itching and redness.
Sometimes it is difficult to tell which symptom is related to which problem.
I was spending a fortune on buying preservative free eye drops in containers which did not go off rapidly – of course, these weren’t available on prescription. Anything available on prescription just didn’t seem to work for me. However, what I did buy really helped to relieve the problems, and also helped reduce my sensitivity to glare.
As you all know, Annie and I attended a Uveitis conference recently, and we came across an organisation called SCOPE Ophthalmics which produces eye drops called Hylo-Tear and Hylo-Forte. These are preservative free and in a container that gives a continuous dose without going off quickly and the drops are easy to apply. I took lots of samples and have been using them ever since. And they are great.
They are available on prescription – hooray! And my GP now knows to include them on my vast prescription list, and my local chemist has started stocking them for me.
Scope Ophthalmics gave us some samples, and I can bring them with me on the Birdshot Day, so you can try them. We have also asked Scope if they can attend, so if they do, you can speak to the experts!
Ok, so dry eyes and blepheritis now sorted. Next to sort is a cure for Birdshot! Hopefully, the Birdshot Research Network which should be launched on 11 September will begin to tackle this.