Episode notes: Today Ruth takes time to discuss the amount of time it takes to restore yourself to pre-stroke functionality. Many people question if they can ever recover.
Ruth is a stroke survivor sharing tips and advice for rehab, recovery and healthy living including nutrition, exercises, personal care, healing and maintaining a grateful attitude. She can be found online at http://stroke.global were she offers help to stroke survivors and caregivers.
Welcome back to the Healthy Life Podcast..
An understanding of the visual pathways can help clarify how a stroke can affect vision.
Retinal and optic nerve fibers on the right side of each eye see the left side of the world (the left part of the visual field), while fibers on the left side of each eye see the right side of the world (the right part of the visual field).
Similarly, superior retinal and optic nerve fibers on the upper part of each eye see the lower part of the world (the bottom part of the visual field), while the inferior retinal and optic fibers on the lower part of each eye see the upper part of the world (the top part of the visual field).
After the optic nerve exits the eyeball from the back of each eye, it travels a short distance before the nasal fibers (the optic nerve fibers on the side of the eye closer to the nose) from each eye cross over to the opposite side (make an "X") as they continue traveling toward the brain. Here is what happens in the eye and brain when we look at an object:
In the right eye, the nasal fibers, which see the far right part of the visual field, cross over to the left side of the brain, while the temporal fibers (those on the side of the eye closer to the temple) which see the far left part of the visual field, do not cross over.
In the left eye, the nasal fibers, which see the far left part of the visual field, cross over to the right side of the brain, while the temporal fibers (those on the side of the eye closer to the temple) which see the far right part of the visual field, do not cross over.
Therefore a stroke, lesion, or injury at the point where the nasal fibers from each eye cross (where the fibers make an "X", called the optic chiasm), would cause loss of the right visual field in the right eye and loss of the left visual field in the left eye.
Further back along the visual pathway (after the fibers have already crossed at the optic chiasm and made an "X"), a stroke, lesion, or injury to the right side of the brain would cause loss of the left visual field of each eye, and an injury to the left side of the brain would cause loss of the right visual field of each eye.
Depending on precisely where in the brain these strokes, lesions, or injuries occur, the effect can involve a smaller or larger area of the visual field and can affect either central (or straight-ahead) vision, peripheral (or side) vision, or both. Multiple strokes or lesions can cause multiple patterns of visual field loss.
Do the Visual Effects From a Stroke Improve?
In the long term, in some cases, visual field defects from stroke may improve, although there are often permanent deficits. After a stroke, the patient should undergo formal visual field testing by an eye doctor or neurologist to identify precisely the part of the visual field that has been affected. This allows documentation of the deficit and provides a baseline for comparison, should the patient note a change or new visual field loss in the future.
While visual fields may have been lost permanently from stroke and cannot seemingly be returned via any western treatment, there are a variety of strategies that enable patients to adapt to their loss of visual field, and to make the most of the vision they do have:
A primary strategy is learning to move the head and eye more deliberately and frequently, in order to better see the area of visual field that has been lost.
People who have double vision from stroke may alleviate this symptom by covering one eye or applying opaque tape to one lens of their eyeglasses.
Prisms can also help resolve double vision. Prisms move or redirect the direction of light entering the eye. They can be ground into the person's eyeglasses or are available as "stick-on patches" (called Fresnel prisms) that can be placed on the eyeglass lenses.
If the double vision persists and is significant enough, strabismus surgery can reposition the muscles that are attached to the eye to straighten the eye position, improve eye movement, and treat double vision.
I suffered from several vision problems that involved, neglect, double vision and bouncing vision that I was told by eye doctors that could not be treated. After months pd TCM treatment my eyesight started to stabilize and one year after beginning treatment it returned to normal.
During my treatment I followed a regime of eye exercises recognizing that the eyes too were controlled by muscles.
Repeat these exercises at least 3 times daily.
We’ve reach that time again...Thanks so much for joining me as we learned about “vision and exercises” ... Remember to visit the stroke.global web site often and give us feedback!... I also hope you’ll join us tomorrow as we learn more about nutrition and exercises! As always it’s an honor and a pleasure sharing today.... thank you! I pray that you’ve enjoyed this podcast... we keep it brief so it’s easy to add to your day... we are on iTunes and Google Play and have links to both on our stroke.global page... please subscribe it boosts us in the ratings and helps us in being able to continue these stroke survivor podcasts.
As always we want to thank our sponsor TCM Restoration for helping us by making this podcast possible. Check them out online at tcmrestoration.net
And thank you again for listening... Please feel free to share this podcast with others, offer your feedback and questions, and follow us online at our website stroke.global or on our Facebook page. Well... I look forward to learning more with you tomorrow... as we continue our adventure...
Coloring books or pages are good therapy for rebuilding eye hand coordination. Feel free to start with big simple pages taped to a desk and use the large crayons that are easier to grasp. Take your time and only increase difficulty when you are ready.