Saturday, October 24, 2009
From the moment William was born, we could tell he looked at us differently than other babies. He had a way of looking you that made you feel as though he could see your soul. He would just stare. Sometimes, when he was just weeks old, he would stare at me and smile and coo. It was the sweetest thing. He looked full of love and sweetness.
Even then I could tell that his eyes were misaligned. It wasn't severe, but it was noticeable. Through the first few months I kept reading in various places, including the informational sheets sent home with me from the pediatrician's office, that a cross-eyed look can be normal in infancy. I reminded myself of this often and waited for it to get better. Instead of getting better it got suddenly worse right at about his first birthday.
I brought this to our pediatrician's attention at his well-baby appointment. She made a referral to the ophthalmology department. We saw the ophthalmologist a little over a week ago. At the time, I just mentioned that he seemed to be cross-eyed from birth but that more recently it seemed to have gotten much more prominent and that William seems to be bothered by it, often shaking his head, bumping into things, and hitting the side of his face with his hand and rubbing his left eye a lot. He's also crying a lot more than he used to. Actually, he has always been such a happy baby, but the last few weeks he has difficulty in the afternoons and is often inconsolable.
After a thorough examination I was told that William's left eye is very weak, that he is very farsighted in the +3 to +4 range, and that we should start patching his right eye a few hours a day and soon get him glasses and plan on corrective surgery to align the left eye.
A few days ago I noticed in some photos that his left eye shows leukocoria. I just learned that word recently, because of this issue. It means "white pupil." I recalled an article I read about this when I was pregnant. I wrote to the ophthalmologist about it and he said he saw the white glow, but didn't see anything bad in his examination. We can't get in to see the pediatric ophthalmologist until November 13th. Right now that seems like forever away.
I've learned that leukocoria is never normal and by what I've found, it's usually an indication of a health problem. Dave and I are doing some research on the matter to present, with photographs of it, to our pediatrician at our appointment on Tuesday. Hopefully we can get some peace of mind on this matter soon.