In a tearful speech during his final keynote speech of his “American Revival” tour in Salt Lake City, Glenn Beck announced that he might go blind in the next year due to a rare eye condition known as macular dystrophy. After having difficulty focusing his eyes, Beck went to see an eye doctor and was told he could be blind within a year, or not, depending on the progression of his disease.
“After I stopped feeling sorry for myself, I truly came to a place which is the greatest blessing: Lord, if you need my eyes, they’re yours. They were yours the whole time anyway. Thank you for letting me see as far as I have,” he said during the speech.
But the Fox News talk show host may have been speaking figuratively when he referred to his possible blindness, as macular dystrophies, by definition, only result in the loss of macular, or central vision, leaving the peripheral vision intact.
“Macular dystrophies lead to a very slow, progressive deterioration of central vision,” Dr. Sophie Bakri, associate professor of Ophthalmology at the Mayo Clinic told ABC News. “Although in the advanced stages, patients may be ‘legally blind’ and unable to drive or read the newspaper, their peripheral vision remains unaffected and they are able to see light, shadows and some large letters.”
Given his age, 46, it is most likely that Beck has a form of retinal macular dystrophy, says Bakri, and unfortunately, there are currently no treatments for these disorders.
This means that it is likely the conservative commentator will slowly lose his central vision, his ability to recognize faces, to read, and to perform other tasks that require the ability to see detail.
Though he has not examined Beck, Glazier told ABC News that it was most likely, given his symptoms and age, that he also suffers from vitelliform macular dystrophy, of the adult-onset variety.
“If it is vitelliform, then there is no treatment, which is probably why he’s so devastated,” he says, referring to Beck’s tearful explanation of his future loss of vision.
RBR-TVBR observation: We certainly hope and point at the liklihood that whatever form of macular degeneration Beck may have, it will still allow him to see to some degree well into the future. We all remember when Rush was losing his hearing a few years ago. Thanks to modern medicine, he now wears a cochlear implant and can do his show just as well as ever. No matter what the fate of Glenn Beck’s eyes, he’s the kind of guy who will get the best medical attention he can find and will not let any disability affect his career or quality of product.