Sara Jane Coffman

For the past several years, I've watched my mother lose the sight in her right eye due to glaucoma. When her condition was diagnosed, she chose the traditional medical treatment, which was to use eyedrops in her eye (at one point she was using 4 different kinds), and having surgery on her eye (she has undergone three different surgeries). A portion of her sight has been saved, but the process has been tedious, painful, and extremely stressful.

You can see why I panicked when I discovered that the pressure in my right eye was beginning to increase. Over a period of 13 months, it went from 18 to 21 to 22 to 23 to 24 to 25. When it reached 25, I decided I needed to do something. I did not want to go with the traditional treatment that my mother had.

About 10 years ago, I had acupuncture treatments so that I could more comfortably wear my contact lenses. My eyes were dry, and somehow the acupuncture made them "wet" enough for me to wear my contacts. But when that doctor retired, I stopped having acupuncture (and had to stop wearing my contacts).

Now with my eye pressure a concern, I decided to find someone who practiced Chinese acupuncture. I interviewed several doctors before deciding to see Dr. Lei Shaw.

My first appointment with Dr. Shaw was in November of 1999. The pressure in my right eye was at its highest - 25. I began seeing her on a regular basis - every two weeks - and drinking a Chinese herbal tea which she recommended. The pressure in my right eye immediately dropped to 24. By March, five months later, it had fallen to 19.

I now see Dr. Shaw once a month. The treatments are not painful. They are not invasive. There are no side effects. (Unless you want to consider having a wonderful sense of well being a side effect.) I look forward to my appointments because I know I'm doing something incredibly positive for myself. I intend to continue my treatments with Dr. Shaw to keep the pressure in my right eye within normal range. I'm thrilled with the results I've received with this therapy and would encourage anyone with similar eye problems to my own to consider discussing it with Dr. Shaw.

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