Finley had her appointment today with Dr. Pierce. For those of you who don't know the back story - this is our third retinal specialist. We loved our last one, but he was at Yale, and he is now 3 hours away. Before that......no, we didn't like her.
We met Dr. Pierce when we gave our first check to Dr. Bennett at the University of Penn. He was at UPenn for a long time. Then we found out he was moving to Mass. Eye and Ear, and we did a happy dance. Not only is he an amazing doctor, he is an amazing person.
And he knows a lot about LCA.
Our appointment was at 8:30 this morning. After getting the kids and Scooby where they needed to be, Mat, Finley and I headed to Mass. Eye and Ear for the day.
The appointment went great. We declined the longest test because after talking to Dr. Pierce, it didn't seem like something we needed to do this year. Plus - this test Finley had under sedation the last time, and she just isn't old enough to not be sedated. They wanted to try it without the sedation today, but we just thought it would be a waste of time.
That cut 3 hours off of our appointment, and we did a happy dance about that.
They did all kinds of test. More than I could ever name. They did this one test where she had to have both eyes covered with patches for 30 minutes. It was for a dark adaptation test - where they would test her night vision after the 30 minutes were up in a darkened room.
Mat took her picture with the eye patches on. The nurse (or whatever they call the workers in an eye doctor's office) drew on them, and it was just funny:
It made me sad to think that this could be her reality in the future. But then she amazed me. We were in a small waiting room while she had them on. There were several doors in there that lead different places. One was open, and once she found it, she could go back to it easily and was able to figure out where the entrance was. It was pretty cool. That made me feel a little better.
In the end, the news was good. Her retinas still have vessels that are thin, but no change since last year. She still has quite a few viable cells if gene therapy becomes a reality for her - the doctor was pleased with that, and so were we. Glasses still can't change anything for her, so that is out, but that is okay. We figured that. Night vision was just slightly decreased, but not enough that he was concerned. Color vision is stable.
News was good. We breathe a sigh of relief for another year. He told us we don't need to go back in 6 months unless concerns come up. That was probably the best news of all. Usually we have to go for a shorter appointment in 6 months from our annual, and it is nice to eliminate that one.
Finley was a trooper. We were there for 6 hours, and she held it together. The drops they put in her eyes are strong and they really burn. And the dilation will last until tomorrow morning. But she hung in there. I have to say, she handled the drops better than a 20 something that was in the office at the same time that kept complaining about her eyes while her mom rubbed her arm. Made me proud of our girl.
We took her to a late lunch after her appointment and then got her an ice cream cone on the way home. Tonight she went to puppy school with me at her request, and got an extra chapter in her book at bedtime. All her request when we told her she could have a treat after a long day.
Tonight we will sleep better. I never sleep well before her appointments. I know everything is fine, but I am always afraid they are going to find something new. And they didn't! It was great.
Tomorrow is a half day for the kids, and Shaggy comes home to us. Tonight was Scooby's last puppy school. We have taken it as far as we are going. We are going to put Shaggy in puppy Kindergarten, but just one round. I think I can take it from there. I just want to see his behavior and a trainer that I like very, very much to help me with any quirks we might need to work out. Plus, I love the trainer, and I am not ready to say goodbye to her yet.