Monday, July 9, 2012

Cora's sweet eyes

well, that wasn't what I had expected.
To be fair though, I had no idea what to expect.

I haven't said too much about Cora's eyes yet because, frankly, until now there hasn't been much to say.
Cora, like all newborns, liked to cross her eyes. If you've had a newborn, you know exactly what I mean. But by four months she hadn't outgrown the habit. The pediatrician wanted us to wait until six months and see if they'd straighten out but they (namely her right eye) didn't. She recommended us to the only pediatric ophthalmologist in town, Dr. Sauberan.

So, at 1:45 today, squarely in the middle of nap time, Out we went to see the good doctor. It's important to note that an ophthalmologist is a step above an optometrist - which is a God-sent, because we don't have Cora on our vision insurance. Hurray for Medical insurance coverage of Ophthamology!

So, he dialated her sweet little eyes. We went back out into the waiting room for thirty minutes with an overtired baby. We went back into the exam room with an overtired baby. The good doctor looked at the over tired baby's eyes. Here is what he saw:

Both eyes cross. The right one crosses more. There is something wrong at the base of her eyes - at the optic nerve - but it's difficult to tell what that is. Again, the right one is worse, but the problem affects both eyes. He said it appears as though one of two things is happening. Maybe both.

First, it could be that the eye didn't form all the way. Eyes start out flat and then wrap around themselves during development like a taco. Her right eye is missing a little piece at the bottom, almost as though the eye never finished forming.

Second, the doctor noted a fair amount of what he called "scarring" at the base of the optic nerve. Both eyes are affected, but again, the right is worse. He said that this scarring (which he hasn't seen before) could have been caused by an infection (although Cora has never had so much as a mild fever, let alone a cold or infection) or possibly by something in utero.

The first of these two things, he sees all the time. The second, he's never seen in a baby. So, immediately we were referred to the retinologist. We see him Thursday afternoon.

Prognosis? Yeah, I'd like an answer to that one too. The doctor is encouraged that Cora appears to have very normal vision on the outset. She follows objects, brings things successfully to her mouth, focuses, swaps items from hand to hand, is beginning to crawl, etc. He is encouraged that she appears to have good vision. What we really don't know though is whether what is wrong with her eyes is done, or is continuing to get worse.

So, after we see the retinologist on Thursday it is very very likely that Cora will be scheduled for a more serious optic nerve evaluation under general anesthesia. This would be performed in tandem by the retinologist and the ophthalmologist. Whew.

The good news: There aren't any growths, tumors, or any other foreign bodies present behind Cora's eyes. While rare, that does happen. Also good news is that she isn't blind (we never really thought she was, but hey, count your blessings!)

I'll update as I get more infrormation. Right now I'm in a fog anyhow, just trying to digest what I've heard. I'm afraid for my darling baby for all the normal motherly reasons - you know, that she won't be absolutely normal, that she'll face challenges, that she won't be able to do vision oriented tasks like driving, reading, bike riding, etc. But just as we are confident that her very life belongs to the Lord, we are confident that He will give her the tools she needs (and us the tools we need) to overcome any challenge to His Glory.

That may have sounded well thought out, but I assure you I'm forgetting a lot. More to come as I remember it.


MamaFujan said...

I will be thinking of you on Thursday.... And beyond!!! :)

Anonymous said...

We're praying for you guys and your darling little girl...Hilary

Geek for Hire said...

Wow. HUGS and remember- this will soon just be a memory and you'll have many more answers.
And prayers too, of course!
-Kim, Sam and Jeremy

Scherbarths said...

We really like Dr. S. He is very good with Rosie and us too. We are thinking if you guys. Let us know if you need anything.

Anonymous said...

Smothering this issue in ceaseless prayer. Love G'Dad