Does anyone have any experience of hemianopia?

Hi there,
We finally had a family meeting with Mum’s care team today, exactly 1 month since she was admitted following her stroke which was caused by a severe bleed. The OT and physio talked about her vision on her left side & how she’s unaware of everything on that side which makes the chances of her recovering some mobility that much harder. It’s called hemianopia & I’ve looked it up on here and online but wondered if anyone had any experience of it with either their own recovery or someone they are caring for?

Dear Jen
There seems to be two stages of being unaware of , say, left side. The lesser version is lack of sight/touch. But the nasty version is total lack of any understanding that the left side exists. Or maybe everything as opposed to anything.

I was paralysed down the left side 100% plus on the right side about 90%. But I did have some awareness that things were happening on both sides.

And above all, my brain was trying everything to find both sides.

I made a miraculous recovery in days. I felt a rush of energy coming to me and I got out the bed and walked… I don’t think many are blessed this way and no medical explanations have been given. I was so utterly delighted that I didn’t ask medical questions, and I was immediately getting on with getting my speech to work and muscles to free up. Thank goodness I could eat and see.

I spent many many hours wiggling errant digits until they got the hang of movement. My left foot took four years to get working. The stroke fatigue still rages six years on.

The great thing for Mum is that she has passed the critical first month… the medics kept telling me and my wife that one month was important.

After the critical month stage, recovery plodded on, it was all slow slow slow. No two strokes are the same. But many factors are common.

I am so pleased for you 5hat you have now had a good meeting with Mums team

Best wishes

Hello JenP. I had a stroke about two years ago and had left hemianopia. While in hospital I was not aware that I was not seeing things on my left side, so if I was given a cup of tea on my left side, I had to be told it was there and look for it. I had an appointment at our local hospital eye clinic about seven months later and I was fortunate that it had corrected itself. Mary

Thanks Mary, it’s useful to know it’s possible for this to correct itself over time. I think when I originally posted this, I was concerned that the hemianopia was going to be Mum’s biggest hurdle to overcome but now I think it’s relatively minor compared to everything else that’s going on.

Since I replied I’ve been trying to remember what it was like when I had left hemianopia. I made a point of turning my head sort of all the time, using both eyes, in case I had missed something on my left side. Even now I know I look more carefully than I used to when crossing the road for example. Mary

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Thanks Mary. Mum is home now and we’re constantly reminding her to turn her head to the left and trying to stand on that side as much as we can to encourage her to to do. Hopefully in time she will get there. Hope you have a lovely Christmas and thanks once again for taking the time to reply xx