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Local diabetic woman urges others to attend their eye appointments!

A local diabetic patient who has regular eye tests to prevent glaucoma urges others to make sure they look after their eyes.

Francesca Di Giorgio from Nelson in Lancashire was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes 23 years ago. Francesca said: “I attended a routine eye appointment at the opticians and the optician referred me to the hospital. This was due to me having high pressure behind my eyes. The consultant who saw me at the hospital prescribed ‘Latanoprost’ eye drops for me. I use these eye drops regularly as prescribed and they have really helped with reducing the pressure behind my eyes.

“Every six months I attend a Glaucoma clinic at Burnley General Hospital, this is to keep a check on my eyes and help prevent Glaucoma.”

Francesca explains this in a recent video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z_fyvtkK-Gs

Glaucoma is a common eye condition where the optic nerve, which connects the eye to the brain, becomes damaged. Glaucoma is usually caused by fluid building up in the front part of the eye, which increases pressure inside the eye. It can lead to reduced vision and even blindness.

Both eyes are usually affected, although it may be worse in 1 eye.

Very occasionally, glaucoma can develop suddenly and cause:

  • intense eye pain
  • nausea and vomiting
  • a red eye
  • a headache
  • tenderness around the eyes
  • seeing rings around lights
  • blurred vision

Francesca added: “I was very fortunate that my high pressures behind my eyes were picked up quite quickly at a routine eye appointment and I was prescribed Latanoprost eye drops. I would strongly recommend that people should continue with their prescribed medication to maintain good eye health which will help save their eyesight.”

You are entitled to a free NHS eye test if:

  • have been diagnosed with diabetes or glaucoma
  • are 40 or over and your mother, father, sibling or child has been diagnosed with glaucoma
  • have been advised by an eye doctor (ophthalmologist) that you're at risk of glaucoma

For more information about free NHS eye tests please visit: https://www.nhs.uk/using-the-nhs/help-with-health-costs/free-nhs-eye-tests-and-optical-vouchers/

For more information about Glaucoma visit: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/glaucoma/