Not Seeing Your Children Grow Up Because of Low Vision
A mother of two with an eye disease, choroidal neovascularization, can barely see and is afraid of missing out on seeing her children grow up. A new device called NuEyes low vision glasses allow her to see with 20/20 vision, but the price of the glasses with no help from insurance causes a problem.
Jamie Gallimore’s Eye Condition
Jamie Gallimore is a mother of two struggling with ocular health issues. In 2000 she began to notice that the vision in her right eye was going wavy. An Ophthalmologist had her immediately undergo laser surgery on her retina. Seventeen years later problems are still occurring with her eyesight, in which Gallimore was diagnosed with choroidal neovascularization. After the laser surgery, scar tissue began to form causing permanent loss to her central vision. Two and a half years ago blood vessels began to grow in her left eye making the vision so blurred that she can barely see anything.
- Ophthalmologist, a doctor who specializes in treating diseases of the eye.
- Retina, a light-sensitive layer of the eye that converts images to brain wave signals.
- Choroidal neovascularization, a condition that causes blood vessels to grow abnormally underneath the retina.
- Gallimore’s ailment is a juvenile form of macular degeneration, a deterioration of the retinas that normally affects patients over 60.
- Her blood vessels have grown abnormally causing them to leak and bleed, in which the retina becomes swollen impairing her central vision.
- The condition creates a permanent blind spot directly in the field of vision
- Contrast vision is lost, developing spots, making the middle of things unable to be seen.
Concerns That You Face With Low Vision
As a mother of two Gallimore worries about the effect her vision loss has on her two sons. Although, she is still able to drive she stays off major roadways, which affects her abilities to go on trips with her sons. When the family goes to the park she is fearful of losing track of her sons. Noah, Gallimore’s 4 year old son, has already been lost three times at the park because he is so fast and doesn’t like to come when called. Another worry is not being able to see her children grow up. Gallimore is worried that she won’t be able to see their school performances or pick out their faces in a crowd.
- Gallimore prefers to stay off major roadways and stay below 60 miles an hour because of her vision disabilities.
- “It scares me because the further away he gets, the more of him I can’t see,” as Gallimore speaks about her son at the park.
- Gallimore isn’t able to read to her boys, the text in most of their books is too small for her to read.
How Can NuEyes Low Vision Glasses Help?
Gallimore’s ophthalmologist, Dr. T. Mark Johnson, suggested that she would be a good candidate for NuEyes low vision glasses. The first time gallimore experienced the low vision glasses she looked at a vision chart from across a room. Before putting on the low vision glasses she could only see the big “E”. Gallimore then put on the low vision glasses and continued reading, her vision became 20/20!
- Gallimore has met several times with Kristi Moore, a NuEyes distributor, who taught her how to use the device and made sure it made a difference in her vision.
- “Well, my jaw just hit the floor. Because I suddenly had about 20/20 vision,” says Gallimore in regards to trying on the NuEyes low vision glasses for the first time.
What Can NuEyes Low Vision Glasses Do?
For the full impact of the glasses it is necessary to try NuEyes low vision glasses on. Sliding on the low vision glasses, suddenly the world is able to be seen. The device can also be commanded by speech recognition, so commanding “glasses make bigger” will allow magnification up to 12x. Another great feature is being able to change the contrast of the text based on specific needs, such as white text on a black background or vice versa.
- The speech commands for magnification on the low vision glasses is a crucial tool for Gallimore, whose sight is limited by the blind spot in her immediate field of vision.
- “Being able to adjust contrast situationally can be very, very helpful, especially for patients like Jamie, who are losing their contrast vision and have trouble discriminating colors that are similar and picking up background from foreground,” says Dr. T. Mark Johnson.
Prioritizing Rehabilitative Devices
There are major advances in vision rehabilitation technology, yet none of these advances seem to be covered by insurance. This is a setback for Gallimore, the price of NuEyes low vision glasses with no help from insurance is too high. In general low vision devices are expensive and it seems there is always a delay of getting them into the mainstream of the medical world. Another problem is doctors not prioritizing rehabilitative devices, as long as the demand stays low for these devices the longer the price will stay high.
- Some federal agencies, such as the Department of Veterans Affairs, will purchase the device for clients, but as a stay-at-home mother, Gallimore doesn’t qualify.
- “There’s always a delay in getting technology into the domain of the medical world, even though there’s no question that we’re moving more and more in this direction, “ says Dr. Janet Sunness, a clinical spokeswoman for the American Academy of Ophthalmology
- “I think attention to visual rehabilitation is maybe under-considered by a lot of practitioners, but I also think as a profession we underestimate the degree to which vision affects people’s lives.” says Dr. T. Mark Johnson.
Holding Onto Hope
Gallimore still holds on to hope of being able to purchase a pair of NuEyes low vision glasses. She has started a GoFundMe page where people can donate to help her purchase a pair of these low vision glasses.
- If you would like to help Jamie Gallimore her GoFundMe link is: www.gofundme.com/nueyes-jamie.
Devices, such as NuEyes low vision glasses are leading the way for people with vision loss. Those who’ve lost hope can now regain it with better vision. The medical world and insurance providers need to recognize these new technological advances and take part in bettering people’s lives by allowing those with vision loss to be able to see again by helping with the costs.