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The Doctors Lounge - Primary Care Answers

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Forum Name: Eye diseases (Ophthalmology)

Question: blindness

badodge - Thu Sep 23, 2004 3:32 am

My 36-year-old daughter had a Heart attack and lacked oxygen to the brain for several minutes. She can walk, talk, and perform many daily functions with little or no help. Her long term and short term memory is good. She has some cognitive lapses.

Her major concern is her vision. At times she can recognize colors, faces and objects around her. Then she says everything just goes away, like someone has closed her eyes.

She can look at a wall and see one or two items (e. g. a curtain) but not everything on the wall (e. g. a picture). She sometimes can see one person in a room, but not another standing next to the original person.

She does not always realize she can see and mentions something like “it is raining” when looking out a window. When asked how she knows’ she is somewhat surprised and realizes and says, ” Because I saw the rain”. And then the vision is gone. Many times she avoids items put in front of her, while other times she does not see them.

It does not appear there is one area or the eye that allows her to “see”, because when she “experiences vision” it can be in front of her or to her left or right side.

She has had an MRI, which showed little damage, and no sign of what would be responsible for cortical blindness. She has also been seen by an optometrist and has no damage to the retina or optical nerve.

She remains in the hospital, but the doctors say they cannot explain her blindness and sometimes there are no answers to why the brain responds as it does.

Does anyone have a better explanation or suggestions for tests I should request?
Dr. Tamer Fouad - Thu Sep 23, 2004 4:55 am

Hello badodge,
It seems that your daughter could be suffering from something known as agnosia. This is the inability to recognize objects, colours or people seen. This could be a result of her cerebral ischemia. There are many types of agnosia and I would advise you to seek the attention of a neurologist that is experienced in this topic.
Beverley - Tue Jun 28, 2005 4:38 pm

Sometimes, when im just looking out of the window, or moving my eyes around, a tear comes from my eye and I have to Cough a lot. Could you tell me if that is normal?
Also, my eyes are often watery and Itchy. I don't wear glasses or anything but I would want to. :shock:

Thank you,

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