A SHETTLESTON woman has undergone potentially sight-saving surgery after her optician suspected she had a serious condition - and urgently referred her to hospital.

Gillian Young, 47, visited Specsavers at Glasgow Fort after floating shapes appeared in her field of vision causing partial sight loss in the bottom half of her eye.

Gillian says: “I began to panic when I woke up with cloudy vision. I thought it may have been an eye infection so called my GP friend who advised me to contact my local optician. The cloudiness began to change into what looked like floaters and I was slowly losing the vision in the bottom half of my eye. I have a son at home and my husband William is a key worker therefore I was at home on my own, becoming increasingly distressed.”

After discussing the abnormalities, store director Catriona Pinkerton referred Gillian to the ophthalmologist at Gartnavel General Hospital with a suspected retinal detachment.

The mum-of-one underwent a series of tests at the hospital which confirmed she did have a retinal detachment which, if left untreated, could potentially have caused blindness. After being rushed to surgery, the retina was repaired using a gas bubble which was inserted into the middle of Gillian’s eye to help the retinal detachment heal in the correct place.

Catriona Pinkerton, store director at Specsavers Glasgow Fort, says: "I spoke to Gillian initially on the phone to assess the situation and knew immediately she’d have to be referred to Gartnavel General Hospital.

"It had been almost 18 years since Gillian’s last eye examination so I wasted no time in referring her directly as I suspected a detached retina given the description of her symptoms."

Gillian said: ‘I was shocked at how quickly the process progressed. Within 24 hours I was in Gartnavel General Hospital ready for surgery.

"The gas bubble technique – pneumatic retinopexy – was carried out using a local anaesthetic ensuring my down time was minimal. The team at Gartnavel praised Catriona’s quick thinking and swift referral as I could have lost my sight if left untreated even for a day longer.

"Thankfully the detached retina is now healing well and I should have a full range of vision in the coming weeks. I can’t thank Catriona enough for her help – my life could have changed significantly if the condition hadn’t be caught quickly."

Catriona added: "I’m really pleased to hear that treatment has gone well for Gillian and that she is resting and recovering now.

"We realise the importance of the role that we play during the current pandemic, and we will continue to be there for our patients and our community the best way we can while our stores remain closed for routine in-person appointments.

"Our staff remain available for essential and emergency eyecare, therefore anyone who has concerns with their eyesight should contact their local store directly, even if they’re not currently registered with Specsavers."