Emily was shocked when her new-born daughter, Evelyn, was diagnosed with glaucoma. Although the future remains uncertain, reading up about the disease and seeking professional help has made things easier.
It will get easier, although it is very worrying but there are lots of different ways to help your child.
I felt worried and anxious when my baby was diagnosed with glaucoma. Evelyn had a cloudy eye since birth but it was only at the 6-8 week antenatal check that someone noticed. The doctor said that she did not have a red-light reflex in her left eye and Evelyn was instantly referred to the ophthalmologist.
I was uncertain how glaucoma would affect Evelyn’s vision and did not know much about the disease. The diagnosis came as a shock as there is no history of glaucoma in my or my partner’s family. I spent a lot of time researching glaucoma as I did not receive much information at the beginning. Initially, I was not even aware that children and babies could also develop or be born with glaucoma.
Although Evelyn did not like having her eye drops put in when she was younger, she has become more familiar with the routine. Evelyn now wears glasses full-time and has had two operations. I have done my own research, but the hospital staff have also been very informative and helpful. Googling for answers and information online has provided some comfort and understanding of glaucoma.
I’m sharing Evelyn’s story to raise awareness about glaucoma in babies and children. My message to anyone who has a child with newly diagnosed glaucoma is to always get professional help. Medical staff are there all the time to help you. It will get easier, although it is very worrying but there are lots of different ways to help your child.
We don’t know how much damage the glaucoma has caused to Evelyn’s optic nerve. Her eyesight is still developing because she is still quite young. We don’t know where we stand. If she does get worse eyesight or if she needs extra help or it might affect her right eye.