On this page you will find descriptions of the eye symptoms and problems I had, and may still have, with regards to my diagnosis of High Grade NeuroEndocrine Carcinoma of Ethmoid Sinus. A rare form of sinus cancer that only has around 100 recorded cases in the entire world; making me unique but unlucky at the same time because not many people will have had treatment for it.....and survived.
When The Problem Started - The main sign of this cancer, in my case, was a lump forming under my right eye towards the nose. As the lump got bigger I started to suffer from really sharp pin, stabbing, eye pains whereby the top of my right eye sometimes felt rock hard (like a marble) while at other times felt soft (like normal).
It would also ache at random times as if someone or something was physically crushing it. This, I suspect, was normally due to pressure pain; especially when that eye began to close whereby its eyelid started to cover the pupil.
When The Problem Started - As my right eye problems got worse, and after seeing the neurology CT Scan, I was told my right eye had been pushed forward and diagonally into the right corner; thus causing me double vision and disorientation when both my eyes were used together. Closing one eye would give me fine vision in the other, opened, eye and vice versa. Either way, my prescription (vision) changed on a daily basis.
Double vision means exactly that. I could see two of the same thing at the same time. What I needed to be careful of here, and get correct, was my distance measurements. Examples:
Example #1 - I would see a man standing on the edge of a pavement waiting to cross the road while the same man was in the middle of the road. Although I could see the distance (width) between them, I could not tell which man was the real one.
Example #2 - I would see one bus in front of me and the same bus a few hundred yards at the back of it. So I would see the bus a few hundred yards away at first and then a split second later see that same bus in front of me. So at the time I had to ask myself (judge) which is the real bus? And what is the distance (length) between the two buses? If I would cross the road thinking the back bus is the real bus, when in fact the front bus is the real bus, I would risk being knocked over.
The disorientation side of the story meant I could not feel where I was walking exactly. A bit like being drunk. I had to step off/on buses and escalators more carefully in the hope I would not lean into people or fall over. Basically, I could not always walk in a straight line and found it difficult to see things clearly and therefore could not focus or judge on the precise/correct distance of something; such as a step or pavement.
When The Problem Started - One of the first signs of this cancer, for me (in hindsight), was that my right eye (bad eye) would water uncontrollably; quite frequently within a day.
This crying effect usually started off with random tear drops, that would last a few minutes at a time each day, before becoming more of a frequent stream of tears at times; which if cycling for example could cause blurring. The crying eye could also dry up (stop leaking) at times as well as become lazy and half closed. With this eye problem alone I had to avoid cycling at times and take care when walking.
A seemingly innocent small spot (#2) is actually a cancerous tissue growth (#5)
With Chemotherapy - Within week one of my chemotherapy treatment I noticed a dramatic improvement to my right eye in terms of its sight adjustments/movements, less strains, less disorientation (on certain days), less double vision (on certain days) and better opening of the eye.
Just prior to the chemotherapy treatment my right eye became almost completely closed, partly due to the extreme pain and strain of actually wanting to see with it. It actually gave me headaches just to look at something for more than 5 seconds. Hence why I chose to wear a Pirate's Patch in order to rest the eye and protect it from too much light.
Now - I no longer get double vision and disorientation. I do sometimes become unbalanced though if I close my eyes whilst taking a shower for example, but that is more of a brain/balance side-effect than an eye side-effect; that only lasts a couple of seconds. Hence why I always hold onto the rail when I need to close my eyes. Overall I would say my eyes have returned 99% "back to normal".