A spur of the moment decision to visit Chorley Specsavers during a Saturday morning family shopping trip has forever changed the life of a local mum-of-two, after a regular eye test revealed a severe brain condition.

Balancing her shopping bags, six-year-old daughter Hazel and eight-month-old baby Henry, Michelle Seddon, aged 28, passed the Chapel Street Specsavers and decided to nip in, conscious that she had recently noticed a slight deterioration in her vision and suffered a number of headaches.

A routine visit

Michelle would spend the next five nights at the Royal Preston Hospital having been examined by store director Rizwan Iqbal and immediately referred as an emergency with suspected intracranial hypertension, a condition which involves raised pressure within the skull on the brain.

After undergoing a variety of scans and tests including lumbar puncture, it was revealed that vessels in Michelle’s skull had narrowed preventing blood from circulating properly, a condition that can cause blindness, a stroke or potentially worse.

Now recovered but still taking medication to control the condition, nursery nurse Michelle, who lives in St Gregory’s Place with partner Ben Kirk and her children, is keen to raise awareness of the importance of regular eye tests.

Importance of regular checks

‘I’m living proof that getting your eye checked regularly can save your sight or even your life’ she said.

‘I vividly remember driving my two children around town about two weeks before my test thinking, ‘I swear my vision has got slightly worse, I need to get my eyes tested’.

‘But even when I started having more regular headaches I just put it down to ‘my prescription must have changed’ and I told myself I’d get round to going into store.

‘That Saturday morning in town, I just saw the Specsavers store and thought I would pop in and get mine and my daughter’s eyes tested.  It was Hazel’s first ever test and it turned out that she needed glasses but I’m sure she’ll always remember that trip for what happened next.’

Family ties

Michelle has since thanked optician and Chorley Specsavers store director Rizwan Iqbal for the immediate care and fast referral she received. At Michelle’s insistence, every member of her extended family has visited the store for an eye test.

She added: ‘The entire Specsavers team were excellent and if it wasn’t for Rizwan, I wouldn’t have known about my condition and the effects would have been worse.

‘All my family have been for a test and it’s definitely given me piece of mind. I cannot explain how important it is for everyone to get their eyes tested regularly.

‘You cannot put a price on your health and I’m so glad I went to Specsavers.’

Eye health advice

Specsavers recommends everybody visits a trusted and experienced optician every two years. Not only will this ensure their eye health remains in optimum condition, it will also help to detect any underlying health problems.

Store director Rizwan Iqbal commented: ‘The entire team here is delighted to hear that Michelle’s recovery is going very well.

‘It is cases like this that highlight the importance of regular eye checks and why it’s vital to get any problems or concerns you may have, no matter how minor they may seem, checked out as soon as possible.

‘You only get one pair of eyes so it is important to look after them – if you’ve not had an eye test in the last two years you should make an appointment as soon as possible.’

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