GPC GPC GPC GPC
It's rampant right now, mostly b/c here in East Texas we have had an unusual amount of winter/spring rain and the pollen is high high high. The allergist tells me its a 25 year high for pollen count. So even some people who have "never had allergies before" are having them this year. I have blogged on this 3 other times (here, here and here), and they are 3 of the most commented-on posts on my entire blog. It's a hot topic because it's a common problem that's very often misdiagnosed. And even when it's diagnosed correctly it's often treated improperly. Add to it that there is very little information on the internet about it and that the symptoms sound (to a regular doctor) like those of "pink eye", and you can see how this can snowball quickly. This has all been hashed out in gory detail on this blog before, but just to hit the high points again: 1) if you're a contact lens wearer with chronic red eyes, it's almost assuredly not "pink eye" that you're "catching over and over" 2) if your contacts used to fit fine but now they "move around a lot" or even "pop out", that screams GPC, no matter what your PCP says 3) don't go to a PCP for eye problems anyway 4) if you're young (under 40) and your contacts bother you it is probably not "dry eye" 5) if you have confirmed GPC, stop messing around with Rx's for Pataday. The real, long term fix is switching to DAILIES. 6) freshly-diagnosed cases of GPC who are miserable need Lotemax. Not FML or pred or dexamethasone or worse: crolom (6.5 if your doctor suggests crolom, find a new doctor). I actually read on Wikipedia (bad source, I know) that diphenhydramine (Benadryl) is often prescribed for this, and that brings up a point that I have been meaning to blog about. NO ANTIHISTAMINE PILL will do anything for your eye problems/symptoms. Yes, I know it says on the Benadryl and Zyrtec boxes that they treat "itchy, watery eyes". But it is my experience that it doesn't work well at all. Its "too far": swallowed, deposited in your stomach/digestive tract, absorbed into your bloodstream, metabolized by your liver, then travels AAAAAAAALL the way to the VEEEEEERY end of the capillaries on the surface of your eye...then delivers a dose of antihistamine that is potent enough to stop itching and watering? I think that's just a taaaaaad optimistic. How about apply the antihistamine (or better yet Lotemax) right to the site and get immediate results with the full potency directly to the area of the problem? Yeah that's more like it. It is my opinion that if you have itchy, watery, red eyes, NO PILL will work to give you relief. You need eye drops. What else? Please post new GPC questions here. Trying to find your new question amidst the literally hundreds of comments from 2009-2011 is really quite difficult. WHEN ASKING A QUESTION THAT YOU WANT A REPLY TO: always be the last comment. Don't "reply" to an OLD comment that's in the middle of a bunch of other old comments...that makes your question very hard to find and answer.