Hello, I am JOSEPH TAMISEN, 36 years old. I was first diagnosed with DIABETES when I was 21 and have been living with it ever since. In my younger years it didn't seem serious to me because I felt normal and didn't really feel any symptoms. It was not until in recent months that I started having dizzy spells and white out episodes. Shortly after, I started observing white opaque like haze with my vision. At first I thought it was just my contact lenses being old and thought that replacing it would do the trick. To my surprise it was still there. I then decided to start wearing my glasses again and still had difficulty seeing. This triggered me to see my doctor again and have myself checked and true enough my FBS went up as high as 377 mg/dL. I had to immediately change my regimen and had to go on a strict diet to control my sugar. But that still didn't answer the question about my vision being blurry. I was then advised to visit an Optha and was eventually diagnosed to have DIABETIC RETINOPATHY. It was a complication of my diabetes which is because of damaged blood vessels at the back of my eyes. Which if not treated may result in blindness. Apart from the meds and regular treatments, tests, I will eventually need laser operation that is quite expensive.
I am an only child and a single parent to a 10 year old son. We don't really have any relatives close to us whom I can seek help from and am the breadwinner of our family. I also have an 82 year old mom who lives with me who is also on medications for her anemia and hypertension. Making ends meet has been a challenge to me and and reaching out to your hearts to help me get through this endeavor. My eyes play a great deal in my life so that I can make a living for my son and mom.
I am reaching out to your hearts that you help me get through this, not really for me but so that I can continue to make a living for my 10 year old son and my mom. Saving my eyes will help me continue doing so. I pray that God continue to give me the strength as I go through this endeavor. I also believe that with HIS guidance, my friends support, and generous people like yourself this too shall pass.
I also wanted to share my story to spread awareness that DIABETES is something that should be taken seriously. Don't wait until it's too late before taking care of your health. Loving your family also means loving and taking care of yourself.
Thank you for taking the time to read through my story.
Update as of 01/22/2020:
I have already undergone my first set of injection of AVASTIN (Intravitreal Injection of anti vascular endothelial growth factor of both eyes) last January 20th. Initially I was told that it would cost 36K for both my eyes but with the help of my HMO and office personnel the cost was lowered to just paying for the actual drug AVASTIN which is 16K for both eyes.
Today, I was finally advised that the next step would be to under go a laser procedure (Pan Retinal Photocoagulation of both eyes) which will help stop further development of the damaged blood vessels and avoid permanent vision loss. The laser procedure costs 40K for both my eyes. After the laser procedure, best case scenario would be to just require two more injection sessions (1 per month). Though may still continue to seek help as my current health care coverage has a certain limit for pre existing conditions which I have already used up during my 1st injection.
I would like to extend my heartfelt gratitude for everyone's support and for the continued prayers. Hoping for the best as I get closer to finally getting all the necessary treatments completed to move forward from this endeavor. God bless you all!