Eye test saved my life says amazed mum

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A grateful mum has praised an optician for saving her life after she was diagnosed with two serious illnesses following a simple eye test.

Michelle Wilson had been suffering from severe headaches and was told to have her eyes checked.

Specsavers store director Neil Drain spotted that both Michelle’s optic nerves were swollen – known as papilledema.

The 28-year-old mum of one was sent to hospital and diagnosed with Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension (IIH), which causes increased pressure around the brain.

In a double blow, tests revealed that Michelle also had early bacterial meningitis.

Thankfully, she was treated for the meningitis and is on medication for IIH, for which there is no cure.

Remarkably, Michelle’s best friend Claire Farrell (28) was also diagnosed with IIH, after she told her pal to get her eyes checked as she too was suffering headaches.

Michelle, from Harestanes in Kirkintilloch, said: “When I initially went to hospital it terrified the life out of me. They kept saying that it was really serious.

“The IIH can cause blindness and if the meningitis had got to my brain any sooner it could have been life-threatening. If it hadn’t been for Neil I probably wouldn’t be here today.”

Michelle added: “IIH affects one or two in every 100,000 people. It’s amazing that Claire was also diagnosed with it in such a short space of time.

“It’s a horrible condition which can cause symptoms including severe headache and temporary loss of vision.

“It’s important to get your eyes checked regularly – it’s saved my life.”

Neil, from Specsavers in Kirkintilloch, said: “Papilledema is not very common. It’s quite unusual to see two cases in such a short space of time.

“I’m glad to have helped Michelle and Claire.”

Visit www.ihaveiih.com for more information.

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