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Patient stories: treating Ismail, India, for retinopathy of prematurity

December 2017

Having been born prematurely, Ismail suffered with loss of vision from birth. Thanks to your support, Ismail and his family are very positive about their future.

When Ismail was born at only 29 weeks, despite neo-natal complications, his parents initially weren’t aware that anything was wrong with his sight. It was only after a visit to his grandfather’s house, that it was discovered that baby Ismail wasn’t responding to visual cues.

Ismail's heartbroken parents had lost hope and the outcome looked bleak until he began treatment at the HV Desai Children’s Eye Centre where, thanks to your support, the vision was restored in one of his eyes.

His mother Nasreen told us about Ismail’s challenging start in life.

He was very weak to start with, so his milestones were also delayed, so he used to lie around, and didn’t do too much activity

Nasreen

Ismail's mother

Child with new glasses.

Ismail wants to become a mechanic

Desperate, his family sought treatment at the Orbis supported H V Desai Eye Hospital, which is part of the India Childhood Blindness Initiative and had just started to specialise in ROP (Retinopathy of Prematurity) - an eye disease that Ismail had been diagnosed with. The hospital’s child-friendly Children’s Eye Centre (CEC) can now provide comprehensive paediatric eye care services to children in the region.

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and likes to ride his bike really fast

Fortunately for Ismail, who was in the late stages of ROP, someone had just donated a retinal camera and he was one of the very first few children to get treated there.

On examination, he was found to have a very late stage of ROP, so we went ahead and did a vitrectomy, or a surgery, for both his eyes. We were able to salvage vision in one of his eyes. Now the child is 7 years old, and doing very well. He has got a good ambulatory vision. He goes to a school [for children with blindness]. He is enrolled in a lot of extra-curricular activities and is able to manage his activities daily living with his vision. His parents are very happy with the outcome. Soon he can go to normal school

Dr Anushree Kaduskar

Partner Hospital Doctor

His delighted mother spoke to us about the progress he has made since having treatment.

I’m extremely grateful and very happy today that he’s able to see better. At around 4-5 years of age, when he started walking, I used to take him around the gardens, and felt very happy to see that he was interacting with the garden and happy and exploring things. I’m happy he can play games and go up to level 4 [on video games]. He can ride a bicycle also. He is able to do all those small things

Nasreen

Ismail's mother

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Ismail and his family

Thanks to your support, Ismail enjoys riding his bike very fast, playing hide-and-seek and dreams of being a car mechanic one day now that he can see.

In the fight against avoidable blindness, every minute counts

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