REDDING, Calif. — A Northstate artist regained her vision after nearly lost her eyesight from a rare stroke. Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy was the key.
Dr. Julie Hamilton with Mercy Medical Center’s Wound, Healing, and Hyperbaric Center said the therapy works, but it is time-sensitive.
“So Darcy came in late Thursday afternoon. Dr. Bowen had called us and said, ‘I have a patient that needs your help, there’s no other option and I’m really worried. She’s got a Central Retinal Artery Occlusion and like any kind of stroke, which is basically what that diagnosis is, just minutes and seconds matter,” said Hamilton.
A third of Darcy Wilson’s vision was blocked in her right eye. Her Ophthalmologist sent her to Mercy to try the hyperbaric chamber.
“The reason hyperbaric oxygen therapy works is what you’re doing, is trying to drive oxygen to a part of the body where there isn’t any,” said Hamilton. “If you do that overtime at 100 percent concentration and the added pressure, your body actually forms new blood vessels”
Wilson said she was scared to get into the chamber at first, but she’s an artist and losing her vision isn’t an option.
“Doing paintings, painting with my grandchildren is so important and such an important part of my life,” said Wilson.
She lives in Weaverville, but was willing to make the drive and get over her fears of the chamber.
“Obviously in a situation like this there’s no question, no matter what her fears were, she was going to go in that chamber.”
After nine 90 minute treatments, she regained her vision.
“I just can’t say enough how grateful I am to all of them for helping me get my vision back,” said Wilson. “It was amazing going through the treatment, terrifying but amazing, amazing their dedication to their work”