How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Dr. Rick Your Own Question

Dr. Rick
Dr. Rick, Board Certified MD
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 7750
Experience:  Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest
Type Your Eye Question Here...
Dr. Rick is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I have, recently, been waking up with a severe headache. I

Resolved Question:

I have, recently, been waking up with a severe headache. I have very bright, colorful dreams, then when I wake up, my head is just throbbing. It's the worst headache pain I've ever had, but it, thankfully, only lasts about 10-15 minutes. This morning, when I woke up, my eyeballs also hurt a lot. When I tried to shut my eyes again, they hurt even more. Upon rising, I noticed that my eyes were really red and bloodshot. They look somewhat better now (4 hours later), but they still feel weird. I know that this headache is not related to sleep apnea. I am very used to those symptoms, and I do sleep with a CPAP mask. This feels different. I am also having some persistent, low-grade nausea. Any ideas? I'm kind of freaked out by this.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Eye
Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 10 months ago.
Hi. I'm Dr. Rick and I have two decades of medical experience. I'm online and happy to answer your question today.

How long has this been going on for?

Is the headache worse when you bend over?

Do you have any other symptoms?

How tall are you and how much do you weigh?

Does it only start when you wake up or has it occurred at different times?

Have you had any visual problems/double vision?

Do you have any medical problems or take any medications?

This is not an answer, but an Information Request. I need this information to answer your question. Please reply, so I can answer your question. I look forward to helping you.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.

Hi, and thanks. This has been going on for about three weeks, I guess. Although, this is the first day that I noticed the eye pain.


 


I haven't noticed it getting worse when I bend over, but then I try to just stay in bed until it passes. Sometimes I get the same headache when I have been seated for awhile and then I stand up abruptly.


 


I have been have been having some minor, but constant nausea for about a week.


 


I am 5'7, 350 lb.


 


It does happen at other times (see above), but is less severe, and even shorter than when I wake up.


 


This morning, I noticed some marked blurriness in my right eye. It didn't last very long.


 


Yes, I am diabetic. I take Metformin 1000mg ER, once a day. I have had intracranial hypertension. It has seemed to be controlled by Furosemide for years now. (I am allergic to Diamoxx). I take Lamyctal as a mood stabilizer, and Nortryptaline, (100mg) for fibromyalgia pain. I don't know the doses of some of those, right off the top of my head. Sorry also about the spelling.


 


Thanks for your help.

Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 10 months ago.

Thank you for that extra information.

 

Have you recently had any imaging studies done of your head?

 

Do you have any hearing problems or hear any sounds in your head?

 

 

Customer: replied 10 months ago.

No recent studies. The last one was a couple years ago. I do not have any hearing issues.


 


I forgot to say that I have neck pain. I think it's just from sitting at my computer all day, but I guess I should mention it.

Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 10 months ago.
Thank you for that extra information.

There could be many causes for your symptoms, one that comes to mind is called pseudotumor cerebri.

Don't panic! The name is XXXXX XXXXX it is not from a brain tumor but rather increased pressure inside your head.

I suggest you have a complete eye exam by an ophthalmologist. Why an eye doctor for a headache? Because in this disease the optic nerves swell from the pressure and an ophthalmologist can see this on exam. Also, it can cause vision loss...

If the eye exam is normal then your next step should be to consult with a neurologist who specializes in headaches.

Does this make sense to you?

I hope this information was helpful for you. But I do work for tips so I want to make sure you are happy with me before rating me. If you have another question on this or a related issue feel free to fire away. You may also receive an email survey after our chat, if you don’t feel that I have earned a “10” rating in all areas, please let me know what I can do to meet your expectations.

Thanks in advance,

Dr. Rick MD FACS
Customer: replied 10 months ago.

Dr. Rick,


 


If I am having symptoms of Pseudotumor Cerebri, I assume that means that the lasix I have been taking is not doing its job any more, correct?


 


Can you please tell me how urgent the eye issue is? I only ask because I do not have medical insurance at this time (thus my asking you instead of going to the clinic). I need to decide whether to try and get some treatment at the weekly free clinic, or if I need to get to an ER. Opthamalogist and Neurologist are not really options for me at this time.


 


Advice? Thanks.

Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 10 months ago.
I didn't notice your history of high ICP in your above post but at least I came up with the correct diagnosis :)

To answer your question: That is correct. With your symptoms the lasik is not doing enough anymore....

If you are having damage to your optic nerve and loss of visual field, which requires an exam by a ophthalmologist to tell for sure, then it is important to get treatment sooner rather than later.

Why? Because any loss of visual field or damage to the optic nerve quickly becomes irreversible if not treated.

Going to the ER really won't be of much value as they are not equipped to evaluated the optic nerve and visual fields. If at all possible I would urge you to do everything in your power to be seen by an eye MD.

Since you have already had the workup for pseudotumor cerebri you should not require another lumbar puncture etc.

Since Diamox is not an option and it seems that lasix is no longer working you may need to have a luboperitoneal shunt placed. This is very effective in PTC.

Another option, although still surgical in nature, would be gastric bypass or banding to help you loose weight. Marked weight loss has been proven to lower ICP, decrease vision loss, headaches and other symptoms.

So. What is the take home message? I would not ignore the resurgence of your headaches and other symptoms as severe, and permanent, vision loss could result.

Does this make sense to you?

I hope this information was helpful for you. But I do work for tips so I want to make sure you are happy with me before rating me. If you have another question on this or a related issue feel free to fire away. You may also receive an email survey after our chat, if you don’t feel that I have earned a “10” rating in all areas, please let me know what I can do to meet your expectations.

Thanks in advance,

Dr. Rick MD FACS
Dr. Rick, Board Certified MD
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 7750
Experience: Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest
Dr. Rick and 2 other Eye Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • I feel so much better today, and upon further investigation believe that there is a chance that the responses I got saved me from a serious, even life threatening situation. I am very grateful to the experts who answered me. Susan O. USA
< Last | Next >
  • I feel so much better today, and upon further investigation believe that there is a chance that the responses I got saved me from a serious, even life threatening situation. I am very grateful to the experts who answered me. Susan O. USA
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin Kernersville, NC
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther Woodstock, NY
  • Thank you so much for taking your time and knowledge to support my concerns. Not only did you answer my questions, you even took it a step further with replying with more pertinent information I needed to know. Robin Elkton, Maryland
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Dr. Dan B.

    Board Certified Ophthalmologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2903
    Eye surgeon experienced in cataracts, glaucoma, retina & neuro-ophthalmology
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DoctorDanB/2010-6-7_6228_just_answer_profile_picture_60_pixels.jpg Dr. Dan B.'s Avatar

    Dr. Dan B.

    Board Certified Ophthalmologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2903
    Eye surgeon experienced in cataracts, glaucoma, retina & neuro-ophthalmology
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/anupamadesai/2010-04-13_122313_Dr._A.S.Desai_new_photo.jpg Dr. A.S. Desai's Avatar

    Dr. A.S. Desai

    Ophthalmologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1903
    MS Ophthalmology with 11 years of surgical expereince
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/gsokoye/2009-10-28_181751_Dr._Stan.JPG Dr. Stan's Avatar

    Dr. Stan

    Ophthalmologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    895
    Johns Hopkins Fellowship Trained, Certified and Licensed Medical Physician and Surgeon
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/eyemd/2009-04-07_180315_pic.jpg Dr. Stevens's Avatar

    Dr. Stevens

    Ophthalmologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    629
    Board Certified Ophthalmologist
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/CO/CorneaDoc/2012-2-18_0390_photo6.64x64.jpg Dr. Susan's Avatar

    Dr. Susan

    Ophthalmologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    217
    Board Certified & Fellowship trained eye surgeon.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/neuph94/2009-10-11_164729_gif_pic.GIF Dr. JP's Avatar

    Dr. JP

    Ophthalmology, Oculoplastic Surgery

    Satisfied Customers:

    28
    Harvard Medical School, Massachussetts Eye and Ear
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JA/JACUSTOMERjcufyksv/2012-3-13_44825_crop3.64x64.jpg Dr-Trace's Avatar

    Dr-Trace

    Board Certified Ophthalmologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    26
    Board Certified in General Ophthalmology
 
 
 

Related Eye Questions