Routine eye testing averts man’s stroke

LUCKY: Phil Callahan, right, has avoided a stroke thanks to an eye test. Optometrist Leigh Plowman discovered an embolus in Mr Callahan’s right eye. They are pictured with student optometrist Mary Knight.

LUCKY: Phil Callahan, right, has avoided a stroke thanks to an eye test. Optometrist Leigh Plowman discovered an embolus in Mr Callahan’s right eye. They are pictured with student optometrist Mary Knight.

A Colac man has avoided a stroke thanks to a routine eye check-up.

Phil Callahan said he was at an appointment with his optometrist Leigh Plowman for new glasses when the optometrist found an embolus in his right eye.

Mr Plowman said he noticed a “little white fleck” in a blood vessel of Mr Callahan’s eye.

He said he recommended Mr Callahan visited his doctor “promptly” because it was likely the embolus signified a blockage in the carotid arteries in his neck and he did not want Mr Callahan to have a stroke.

Mr Callahan said his MRI results showed his right artery was about 55-per-cent blocked.

He said his doctor “nearly guaranteed” that he would have a stroke within 12 months if he failed to address the issue.

Mr Callahan said after surgery the doctor told him his right artery was 75-to-80-per-cent blocked.

“He said ‘you’re a lucky person’.

For the full story see today’s Colac Herald.

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