Vision problems (double vision) - can I improve it?

I got my TBI 10 years ago (falling off a bike, *with* a helmet on - if I hadn't been wearing a helmet - !!!!). I know I'm lucky to be alive, and in as good a state as I am in, but...

I am 'blind' - that is the official term, but in fact I just have awful eyesight - when I look straight forward, everything to the left looks fine, but I see nothing to my right. If I *look* over to the right, I can see there, fine, but a huge part of my field-of-view is completely missing. There is *no*way* I can drive, anymore!

I also find that, if I look straight forwards, everything is fine, but if I swivel my eyes down, I see two images - one is the 'real' one, but the second is wonky, much lower, and off to the right. When I 'woke up' (or, as far back as I can remember, anyway), six months after my accident, I had to wear a patch over one eye all the time, because I saw double, everywhere. Thankfully, that problem has gone away, when I look straight forward, but it is still there, when I roll my eyes down.

These days, I am doing some 'exercises' for my eyes. Instead of rolling my head (so I look straight out of the front of my eye sockets), I roll my eyes, and look down. I do this while I am outside, walking - I spot something on the pavement, ahead, and I keep staring at it, as I walk towards it, so I have to roll my eyes down. I start off with just one image, but then it splits into two. I know which one is the right one (as it is stronger); the other one is weaker, and wonky, and they get further and further apart.

I have been doing that 'exercise' for a while, and I *think* I'm getting better (although I am not certain - How bad did it used to be? Was it worse? Hmmm...). The 'real' image seems stronger, and the 'silly' image seems less intense. Fairly recently, I've started doing it when I am reading, as well. The toe of the page is easy, as there is just one image, but as I get further down the page, there are two images, and they get further apart... It *is* hard work (and gets harder, the further down the page I go). Is it worth it? Will my vision always be as bad as it is, or will doing these exercises help? Is it worth me doing them?

14 Replies

  • Early days yet Flumptious.....BUT it all sounds positive👍

    Give yourself a timescale for improvement and write down any daily

    positive and negative differences, that's if there are any.

    Good luck


  • I really think you need to ask this question of an eye specialist, perhaps another referral to the Opthalmology department to get their input.

    Sorry couldn't be more help Janet x

  • Thanks, Kirk. I was seeing an ophthalmologist for... um, dunno, maybe a couple of years after my accident, but then he discharged me (actually, I think that was before I went back to work, so less than 18 months). He was never very informative, and I have no wish to see him again (although, it was nice of him to call me 'blind', as I get reduced train fare, reduced TV licence, free buses...). I suspect any improvement I think I'm seeing is really just wishful thinking!

  • Have you seen a neuro ophthalmologist?

    They assess everything and can tell what is from the brain and what is from the eye. I was told my deficit from the brain will never change.

    Sorry I can't be more helpful!

  • Maybe not, is there another ophthalmologist that you can be referred to, maybe that one has moved on, I just saw another neurologist today, I'd never seen before and he was displeased at the lack of follow up I'd had so hopefully things will move on now. Go back to your GP and ask again, try and get a definitive answer. I'm sure that if you stop pushing they let you, you owe it to yourself and your family, it shows you're not giving up, don't let them make you

    Janet xxx

  • I have the same thing! My final year project is on it as well, so I'll let you know what I find :p

    The theory is there! It should kick start your nervous system into finding ways around the damaged neurons. The brain is plastic after all.

  • I have been told about Shaylers Vision Centre.

    Apparently he has fixed another girl at Headway Dorset. She had bad Double Vision, and a Blind Spot, and Bad Balance, and now she is driving again!

    I went for an assessment at Shaylers Vision. Mr Shayler did my assessment, and he gave me tests I have never done!

    He said I must try the first 4 sessions, which take place over 2 days - 2 sessions on each day! I should be able to feel some improvement after this. If I do, I will continue with the whole course, but if I don't, I must stop then. (I then only pay the £175 for those 4 sessions)

    He seems quite an honest fellow, and has told me that the therapy may not work, but he said he feels that in my case I may get some benefit!

    He works mainly with children, and adults, with learning disabilities. He has recently been given a high award by the USA!

    He's worth a try!

    (The NHS do not pay, it's a private clinic, so you have to fork out the cash. Total cost will be about £850! The assessment cost me £75)

  • That's very interesting! Might give them a call tomorrow

  • Cool. I will let you know how my first sessions are. They are only on 7 & 8th September.



  • Hi Flumptious. Had a motorcycle accident 6 years ago, and I have what sounds like exactly the same sight issue. No right side field of view. I've seen various people regarding it, even managed to get a referral to Moorfields in London. They didn't tell me what I wanted to hear unfortunately, there is currently nothing they could do for me. All to do with damage to the visual cortex.

    I particularly struggle in busy situations with lots of people. Reading is very hard work, and have lost the enjoyment as a result.

    Are you aware of the Read-Right thing?

  • helpful thread. cant drive due to field of view damage , but have other issues including the visual. [judge speed of moving objects differently, depth perception issue, colour vision damage, optic nerve/disc damage, cupped something or other (cant remember), nystagmus, and other neuro-opthalmology stuff. my opthalmologist reckoned that i had had a vascular event, but i didnt get much feedback from the neurologist on that. i had a brain illness, and another illness that could have affected my brain , prolonged undiagnosed DKA, could have had a vascular event also.]

    i would definitely go back and see a good opthalmologist or neuro opthalmologist, because you need to be aware of everything that youre dealing with in its entirety. all the best

  • Wow I didn't know that this symptom exists that's quit amazing that this can happen and how you get over it or work through it Flumptious. Keep trying and seek further help would be my advice.

  • My vision was to all intents and purposes non-functional. I had hornets syndrome and nystagmus present. Diverged eyes and nasty double vision. My visual prognosis was always the most wishy washy and to be honest I got more useful rehab from my neurophysio than any 'eye' specialist I saw.

    7 months post stroke I got my license back. Exercises with my patch brought my eyes back in line and lots of tracing work. It then just gradually improved over the years. I still have far left gaze nystagmus and when tired or unwell it can definitely feel less stable. I do have pretty strong prisms in my glasses to help with muscle stability. I do not drive tired or far in the dark.

    I was told the potential for improvement depended on what was actually damaged. It was very hard work and in the early days was also hugely unpleasant and overdoing it would quickly induce vomiting. That line was hard to draw. It can be done though.

    I would ask for some new referrals to recommended specialists to get some new advice. Thinking has changed a lot in ten years. x

  • If you think your having a improvement keep going. As others have said the brain is plastic so it should be able to recover who knows how much?

    If the improvements are better for you? Be they real or not? Why not continue.

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