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Dry Eyes


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#1 Clementine

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Posted 18 November 2008 - 04:50 AM

Hello,

How many of you all have abnormally dry eyes? I have had dry, red eyes for about 3 weeks. I don't think they are dry from environmental factors because nothing has changed. A few things have changed. I went from 5mgs to 7.5mgs or Norvasc, to treat Raynaud's. I have been on antibiotics for a long time for my dental work.

I've been wearing my glasses more often instead of contacts, but they are still red, especially upon awakening. Eye moisturizers relieve them a little but not much.

I am just trying to decide if a trip to the eye doctor. is warranted. Along with the dry eyes, I have joint aches (a symptom of Sjogren's) but those could just be the osteonecrosis.

If you all have any pointers on what to ask the eye doctor. or any specific tests, please let me know. I am not sure if the doctor. I may see will have a lot of experience with Sjogren's/Scleroderma.

Thanks,
Clem

#2 CraigR

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Posted 18 November 2008 - 08:51 AM

I have Sjogren's, so I definitely have dry eyes, In my case, dry mouth is much more noticeable - especially upon exertion.

I cannot eat dry toast, crackers, etc., without a glass of water. That is one of my most obvious symptoms.

My first knowledge of dry eyes came from an optometrist who told me that I had an unusual lack of tear flow in my eyes - even before I had noticed the symptoms.

Many drugs cause dry eyes/mouth, so that's also a possibility.

Joint aches can also be a sclero symptom. I have little of that, but quite a lot of myalgia (pain/inflammation of muscle) from sclero/Sjogren's.

Craig

#3 scampie5

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Posted 18 November 2008 - 09:54 AM

Hi I have dry eyes and use artificial tears that my eye specialist said to use it is due to the scleroderma and can be very itchy and I get very red eyes. They thought I had glaucoma but today I got the all clear. My nose gets very dry also inside and I have a cream that I use for it to keep it moist. Hope this helps.

Lynn

#4 nan

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Posted 18 November 2008 - 02:03 PM

I have Sjogren's too. My rheumatologist did the test for tear production. My worst sympton usually is my dry mouth. My joints and muscles hurt all of the time. There is also a blood test for Sjogren's. Twice mine has been positive and once negative. I had the lip biopsy and it said I didn't have Sjogren's. My doctor at Hopkins says I do have Sjogren's, so does my opthamologist. Good Luck!
Nan

#5 canon

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Posted 18 November 2008 - 05:24 PM

Hi Clem,

Yep dry eyes are in season again. Mine always get worse when the heat goes on and use artificial tears all the time. Am getting ready to have punctal plugs put in soon in hopes to save some tears and not have to use so many eye drops.

With gentle thoughts,

Judy
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#6 Buttons

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Posted 18 November 2008 - 10:16 PM

Yes Clementine I'm another with dry eyes, nose & mouth. My eyes where constantly red & itchy so much so all I wanted to do was keep my eyes closed. I was told it was Sicca Syndrome / Sjogrens and was given some eye drops called Rapitil, (I think these are an antihistamine drop) they do stop the redness & itching and I wear glasses all the time which seem to give them some protection.

Lyndylou I use a saline spray for my nose which the consultant told me to get, I find that helps and you can use it as many times as you want.

#7 beanie

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Posted 19 November 2008 - 02:07 AM

My eyes are sooooo red all the time. Up to about 8 months ago, I could still wear my contacts periodically but now I just wear my glasses. Dry too. I use the artificial tears which helps them feel better, but they don't look much better. It is so embarrassing sometimes how red they are and someone says, what is the matter with your eyes. My doctor says I do have some inflammation in my eyes too. What works for the redness?

Michelle

#8 Purr

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Posted 19 November 2008 - 03:31 AM

I use nasal saline spray too. And I use artificial tears and Restasis for dry eyes and sugarless gum for dry mouth. My Sjogren's just started getting worse so I have a humidifier in my bedroom and family room. All of those things help a lot.

Hope you find some relief, Clementine.

Christy
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#9 mando621

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Posted 19 November 2008 - 04:48 AM

Hi,
I also started with dry eyes as the first noticable problem. It was noticed by the optometrist. I use Restasis drops and they help so much. I've read that plugs in the tear ducts will make the Restasis drops less effective, so I've been reluctant to get the plugs.

I'm not sure what I should do since the dry eyes are getting so much worse. I haven't found a moisture eye drop that I like yet. They are expensive to buy, use once and throw away.

It is interesting that blood tests and salivary gland biopsy from the lip are what my doctors think is required to diagnose SJogren's, when it should be obvious from symptoms (taking no medication at all except Restasis, so it can't be medicine causing the problems). My blood work doesn't show the Sjogren's markers and I'm not going to go through the lip biopsy.

My eyes get red in the evenings, after working so hard all day. I wouldn't think of using an antihistamine drop since that might make the dryness worse. When I use oral allergy medicine it makes my eyes worse.

Mando.

#10 Clementine

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Posted 20 November 2008 - 04:59 PM

Sounds like this is a pretty common problem. I just read on a well respected website that Omega 3s can help with dry eyes. I am going to try that but I am also going to visit the eye doctor.

Thanks!

#11 Clementine

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Posted 21 November 2008 - 05:39 AM

I just got back from the eye doctor. He said my inflamed eyes were definitely from scleroderma and that it pointed to Sjogren's. I am going to try the steroid Tobradex for 2 weeks, along with Restasis. He said that one could use the vial of Restasis in smaller portions over a day and a half typically. He said to keep it refrigerated in a shot glass with the vial standing up. This allows you to not have to throw the unused medication away and save you money. Keeping it cold feels better on your eyes.

No contacts for at least 2 weeks, which actually sounds wonderful.

#12 Sweet

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Posted 21 November 2008 - 06:09 AM

Aww Jenny,

I'm sorry. I had to give up wearing contacts last year, which kind of bummed me out, but I'm resigned to it now. My eye doctor actually didn't give Restasis much credit, so he didn't prescribe it. He gave me Systane, which works fairly well.

Sorry about this, I know you have so much going on and you didn't need something else!
Warm and gentle hugs,

Pamela
ISN Support Specialist
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)