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It is true that there is nothing that one can do to prevent this disease from progressing further. However it is a very gradually progressive disease and can take decades to worsen.
I am a psychologist by profession. It is necessary for me to read and write to assess and write reports. How "gradual" is this disease? How long can I reasonably expect to be able to see well enough to read and write?
Not every case would require a surgical treatment. If at all there are signs of corneal decompensation and raised intraocular pressure(IOP) then symptomatic treatment in the form of eye drops and contact lenses can be given. If there are no such signs then no intervention is required and only annual follow up should be fine.
I also have cataracts in both eyes. My doctor does not want to do cataract surgery just yet. I have read that sometimes cataract surgery makes this disease worse? What's the best outcome for me: cataract surgery or no cataract surgery?
For how long the clarity of vision would remain would depend on which stage of Fuch's dystrophy you are in. If in early stages ( only guttata) then vision would remain good. If IOP rises then the next stage of corneal edema sets in which can interfere with vision( can be treated with IOP lowering eye drops and bandage contact lenses)
Sorry I got your last post after sending my previous reply.
I don't know what stage I'm in. I'll have to ask my doctor
What about cataract surgery?
Yes, the outcome of cataract surgery would heavily depend on the endothelial cells at the time of surgery. In Fuch's dystrophy there is loss of endothelial cells which can cause poor visual outcome after surgery. Hence the endothelial cells are assessed prior to surgery ( cell count and morphology) .
Thank you so much for your information
You can enquire about the stage of the disease and regarding the endothelial cell count and morphology , from your ophthalmologist. If the thickness of the cornea is good ( thinner than 630 microns) and cell count is good then only cataract surgery can be done. However if the surgeon feels that the above are not met with then a combined surgery of cataract extraction and keratoplasty can be done ( corneal transplantation).
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It was a pleasure to have answered this question. Views expressed are for information purpose only and cannot substitute a visit to an ophthalmologist