An Australian teacher saw a vacation of a lifetime to Europe turn into a life-changing experience after losing vision in one eye while traveling the Mediterranean.
Elise Osmand was island hopping through Greece enjoying good food in Italy when she suddenly lost most of her vision in one eye.
The 28-year-old was then given a diagnosis by Greek doctors who she compared to a “death sentence” when her symptoms worsened.
At first, Elise noticed that her vision in her right eye was diminished – she could see the bottom half of her vision in her right eye, but the top half was “blurry to dark brown,” which made her feel like she had makeup. blotchy on her iris.
She ignored the symptoms of jet lag and waited another 24 hours to arrive in Athens before seeking medical attention.
At that point, the Aussie national had completely lost sight in her right eye.
When meeting with a doctor at the hospital, medics struggled to figure out what was wrong – each diagnosis sending Elise further panic.
Opening up to news.com.au, she explained: “He said very clearly it might be a brain tumor.
‘The next thing he said was …’ you don’t have a brain tumor … but it could be cancer ‘. Then I got scared. ‘
After further investigation, the doctors determined that although it was not a tumor or cancer, the cause of the blurred vision was a life-altering medical condition.
Elise said, “He said after further testing that I had multiple sclerosis (MS) … and all I knew about it was a wheelchair.
‘In the beginning I got upset … it was a very confronting moment. It felt like my world was falling apart … a death sentence. ‘
Multiple sclerosis is a chronic disease of the central nervous system that causes the body to attack itself, in which the immune system damages the nerves, leading to symptoms such as extreme fatigue, vision problems and muscle stiffness and spasms.
After the diagnosis, Elise has seen her life change completely.
She said, “This has been a huge change in my life since my diagnosis in 2019,” she explained.
‘I moved to the Gold Coast to be closer to the beach [and] on a treatment that works. “
She continued, “I’ve always been very active and would get a lot of exercise. Now, while it’s still very good for me to do, it can cause symptoms and exhaust me to a point where I can’t recover from. stay hydrated and cool. “
Elise now uses social media – including her Instagram page – to raise awareness about the disease.
MS is a lifelong condition, but its symptoms can be managed with treatment.
Although the average life expectancy is slightly lower for people with MS, there are different treatments for the different versions of the disease.
There is currently no cure for the disease, and advise the NHS that the disease is “challenging” to live with – but advances in medical science over the past 20 years have “significantly improved the quality of life” of people with the condition.