Kacie Wayman is a 31-year old pre-K teacher from Tulsa, Oklahoma. When she sees a student squinting at the blackboard, she’ll remind his or her parents to take them into an optometrist for a vision exam. As Kacie can attest, those check-ups aren’t just for people looking for glasses or contacts, they can be life-saving.
Twelve years ago, as a college student, Kacie began to have blind-spots in her vision. While watching TV or reading, she would see black for a few second and get dizzy. The experience scared her, but the attacks were infrequent, at least at first. Several months after the spells of blindness and dizziness started, however, they began to occur at an alarming rate.
Realizing she could not put off medical treatment any longer, Kacie made an appointment with Dr. Louis King, an optometric physician in Coweta. Dr. King examined her optic nerves, which looked healthy. Then he did a visual field test on Kacie’s peripheral vision and immediately realized that something was wrong: Kacie consistently had huge holes in her peripheral eye-sight.
Dr. King referred her to Dr. Jason Ellen in Tulsa, a specialist who performed an ultrasound on her eye balls as well as a series of other tests. The tests revealed that Kacie’s problems were serious, potentially even life-threatening: a colloid cyst, a form of slow-growing brain tumor, was obstructing the movement of her spinal fluid, a condition which could have completely and permanently blinded her if left untreated.
Today, Kacie is seeing a neuro surgeon, thanks to Dr. King and Dr. Ellen’s thorough work and quick diagnosis. She had brain surgery to remove the cyst, and another procedure to help drain the extra spinal fluid that had built up behind her eyes. While she has lost some vision in the corner of her eyes, her overall health outlook is positive, and she no longer has the dizzy-spells and attacks of complete blindness she suffered in college.
Today, Kacie cites her case as a reason she will be voting “no” on State Question 793.
“My doctors took the time to listen to me, to get to know my problems and to run several tests,” said Kacie. “They wanted to take care of me; it wasn’t about selling cheap glasses and then getting me out the door quickly.”
Kacie says it’s scary to think of what might have happened to her if a Walmart exam was her only option.
“There is simply no way I could have gotten that level of care and attention at a Walmart Supercenter,” she says. “I truly believe that my condition would have gone unnoticed and undiagnosed in that environment. That’s why I believe it’s important to vote ‘no’ on State Question 793. I want to make sure the next person with a serious condition gets the treatment they need.”
Kacie Wayman's optometric physicians helped to diagnose her with a brain tumor. Their quick diagnosis helped to save her vision.