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Haemorrhaging in vessels of eye: AIDS-related? Solutions.
Feb 25, 2001

Dear Doctor Feinberg,

My boyfriend has recently noticed slight disturbance in his vision and the result of an examination of his eyes showed that the blood vessels in both eyes are starting to haemorrhage. This is akin to what happens with diabetics, however he is NOT diabetic. His blood pressure is normal. Neither are there any signs of CMV. His T4 cell count is below 200. The consultant felt it was very unusual in a non-diabetic his age (35). Is this condition related to AIDS? If so, how common is it?

He is presently taking no combination therapy, but will be soon (+/- 1 week). If he manages to build up his body/blood strength again, will the condition stop of its own accord? Why do the blood vessels burst in this way?

Thanks for your time

Response from Dr. Feinberg

CMV retinitis can cause hemorrhage and inflammation in the retina that has a very typical appearance to an eye doctor experienced with this disease. HIV can also be associated with a retinal condition called "cotton wool spots" because of the way they look, but these are not hemorrhages. So I don't think his problem is necessarily AIDS-related. If he hasn't seen a retina specialist, then he should be referred to one now to determine what is causing this problem.

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