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Dr. Chip
Dr. Chip, Board Certified Physician
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 35536
Experience:  20 yrs. in practice, includinge surgery, general medicine, addiction medicine and pain.
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Distorted vision on left side of view - blurred area. Not left

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Distorted vision on left side of view - blurred area. Not left or right eye problem. Appears to be a brain issue. Lasts for 20 minutes. First occurred 4 years ago. Last occurred 2 years ago. Two year intervals. Looking for clues on what it might be so I can research more.
Hi--your medical conditions and medications first please. How many times recently has this happened and when did you last have an eye exam?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

No relevant medical conditions. No medication. Once today. Last time two years ago, before that four years ago. Last eye exam two years ago. Symptoms are exactly same and very distinctive.

OK Raymond--in the past when this happened did you have any tests done then and, again, has this just happened once this time around? Also when it happens any other symptoms like dizziness, loss of balance, weakness, numbness?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

My GP referred me for TIA checks but all came back okay. No other symptoms at all. Purely an inability to see clearly on left side of view.

OK Raymond. All I can do here is give you possibilities but this definitely needs immediate evaluation. Of course, even if everything checked out before you still need a check for a possible TIA including a brain MRI, cardiac workup, and Doppler studies of your carotids. You need your eyes checked again because there could be a problem with glaucoma or a detached retina. Finally, this could be what's called a variant migraine syndrome--the aura of the migraine without the headache. While I don't think this is a TIA that definitely needs to be ruled out as soon as possible.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I find it difficult to reconcile three absolutely identical events in six years with a TIA. The only difference between the three was one in a morning, one in an afternoon and one in an evening. The visual manifestation was identical each time. I'm looking to broaden my search for possible causes, ideally finding an identical case. Any thoughts?

I also think a TIA is unlikely Raymond, but just because an identical thing happened in the past and didn't lead to anything like a stroke doesn't mean it can't happen again and this time be a TIA. I realize glaucoma and retinal detachments that occurred in the past would also likely have progressed by now so those are also unlikely but they still have to be mentioned and checked for this time around. A variant migraine, however, could easily occur very infrequently and it would give the same symptoms when it did so I think that's the most likely diagnosis here. But I'm obligated in good conscience to give you the differential here, as unlikely as some of them may be. The botXXXXX XXXXXne is a sympXXXXX XXXXXke this needs to be evaluated as soon as possible, no matter what has happened in the past and no matter what studies were done before.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I just watched a video on visual aura - no headache. This is a possibility. I will research more. Are there any tests?


This kind of disorder really is only diagnosed by patient history and when all other possible causes are ruled out Raymond. An MRI of the brain will be normal with variant migraine and there are no blood tests or other neurological tests specifically for its diagnosis. Let me know how it goes and please remember to rate my service to you
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