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Dr. Rick
Dr. Rick, Board Certified MD
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 11420
Experience:  Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest
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I have inflamation in my optic nerve in my left eye, light

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i have inflamation in my optic nerve in my left eye, light headedness ,terrible headaches over my left eye, feeling of nachea, and extreme sweats. my eye specialist has ordered a lumbar puncture. what could he be looking for? i also have reduced vision in my left eye, and the colors are washed out
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Eye
Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 7 years ago.
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Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 7 years ago.

In the lumbar puncture the pressure of the fluid around your brain (csf) will be checked. If there is swelling in both your optic nerves, and sometimes when there is swelling in just one, it can be due to increased intracranial pressure. Also, a sample of csf will be taken to check for bleeding, fungal, viral and bacterial infection as well as evidence of inflammatory conditions (such as MS) or neoplastic processes.

I would expect that your ophthalmologist would work closely with an internal medicine physician during this workup. Any of the above issues could cause optic nerve inflammation, headache, night sweats as well as a slew of other physical symptoms.

The reduced vision and washed out colors in your affected eye is due to the involvement of the optic nerve. This might improve once the inflammation resolves, it is hard to tell at this point.

You have a very complex problem but from what you have stated it sounds like you are in are in good hands. I would do exactly what your ophthalmologist is doing if you came to my office.

I wish you the best of luck. If you think about it, I would like to know how things turn out for you. You can leave a message on this site to my attention and I should get it.

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