Monday, February 09, 2009

Practically Blind! Our Experience with Amblyopia.

I just got back from Boba Fett's eye doctor appointment and I am so happy!

Let me take you back19 months when Moose and I noticed that suddenly one of Boba Fett's eyes was turning in. We made an appointment with an eye doctor right away. We arrived and went through an exam when the seriously tall, dark, and deep voiced doctor said to me..."Your son is practically blind in the left eye." WHAT? I tried not to cry. How could he be seemingly fine and now you tell me he is almost blind!?!
A little bit of advice to you eye doctors, this is not the way to break a diagnosis of severe amblyopia to a mother of a 3 year old. I was a mess for the month it took us to get in to the pediatric ophthalmologist up at the eye clinic.

Slowly I learned that this is not a terribly unusual condition, that it is a problem with the brain not receiving the information from the eye NOT a problem with the eye itself. I learned that it is easily treated with patching and not something to grieve over. No one at the eye clinic has ever said the word "blind" to us.

Boba Fett has been wearing glasses since the initial diagnosis and we are so greatful for them. Those thick frames are the finishing touch to that boy's adorable personality. When you see those glasses you know you are in for an exceptional kid. We have a hard time imagining him without those glasses.

We have been patching for about 18 months now. At first we used the sticky patches but that caused serious problems because they hurt. Then I heard about Patch Pals and ordered one, true to form once I received it I figured out how to make my own for pennies and now when we misplace a patch I just run into the sewing room, grab a piece of felt and whip up another. For the fist few months we patched for 4 hours a day, now we patch for 2 hours a day. If all goes well we can move to 1 hour a day or 2 hours every other day.

At the beginning Boba Fett's left eye was 20/200 with his glasses on now it is 20/25 which is awesome as the ideal is 20./20. Actually we got down to 20/35 in a matter of months but the last few lines is the hardest part. At our appointment in December he had gone back a little bit because we had been really inconsistent with patching. This time we were very consistent and we made big improvements.
Today the Dr. was thrilled and didn't even have much to say, just that things were going well. We also talked about V8 because Boba Fett insists that is it medicine for his eye and mentions that each time he has a can. Boba Fett certainly contributes his eye improvement to faithful V8 drinking.

I am so grateful that we were able to go to a good doctor that specializes in this type of condition, that there was a simple non invasive treatment and that we have been blessed with good health.

Boba Fett got to choose 5 stickers at the doctor's office.

If you would like to make your own patch let me know and I will send you a pattern. The patch in the picture was made and hand embroidered by me. it is also our most used and therefore shabbiest patch.

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