Nicole Schultz, a two-time cancer survivor, has been suffering from the devastating effects of a condition known as ocular graft-versus-host disease (GvHD).
Medical and Ocular History
Schultz was diagnosed with ocular GvHD following her second bone marrow transplant, which she received during her cancer treatment. Serious complications can arise in patients with GvHD, when donor cells from transplants attack connective tissue of the patient or host. For Schultz, GvHD manifested in her eyes, which were no longer able to produce tears and resulted in painful flare-ups. For years she sought treatment for dry eye, visiting many doctors, who prescribed various eye drops and even punctal plugs to increase tears and moisture in her eyes. Schultz’s life changed dramatically, since she was required to administer drops multiple times a day to diminish the pain she experienced. She says she was on the verge of giving up hope when it was suggested to visit the USC Roski Eye Institute to try a unique contact lens treatment option known as prosthetic replacement of the ocular surface ecosystem (PROSE).
After meeting Schultz for the first time, Gloria Chiu, OD, FAAO, FSLS, who is trained in PROSE treatment, immediately knew that she could help relieve Schultz’s symptoms.
PROSE treatment, a non-surgical procedure, is offered to patients who suffer from serious corneal conditions and ocular surface diseases. PROSE therapy reduces symptoms, supports healing and improves vision through the use of a prosthetic scleral device that is tailored for each individual. Schultz is also using non-preserved artificial tears with PROSE therapy to enhance comfort and fit.
Recent studies have demonstrated that patients who received this pioneering treatment experienced a notable improvement in their quality of vision and quality of life as a result.
The USC Roski Eye Institute is the third of 12 sites in the nation to offer PROSE technology to our patients. Chiu is one of only two West Coast eye care providers to offer PROSE treatment.
“It is a privilege to be able to provide Nicole with a treatment that can quite simply change her life. These custom devices help to improve her vision, comfort and assist in the healing of her ocular surface,” says Chiu.
For more information on PROSE treatment, please visit eye.keckmedicine.org/PROSE
Join the USC Roski Eye Institute in its quest to preserve, protect and restore the gift of sight by making your tax-deductible donation today. Thank you for your support! GIVETO.USC.EDU/EYE
Next, read about Ophthalmic Services Provided to Special Olympic Athletes