Faiz, a four month old boy was a cute little bundle of joy for his parents. He was growing up to be a nice chubby kid. However, unfortunately since the past one month, his eyes had begun to grow in size.
At first Faiz’s parents were very happy that their child was having nice prominent eyes. Over a period of few more days his eyes started watering and he began avoiding light. That is when the parents thought that something was amiss.
They met Dr. Prachi for a consultation who after a thorough eye examination diagnosed the child to have congenital glaucoma. Congenital Glaucoma is an eye condition in which high pressure fluid in the child’s eye damages the optic nerve, that is the nerve that sends signals from the eye to the brain and helps us see. The distraught parents were overcome with guilt and thought it was because of their short comings in nurturing Faiz that led to the problem.
Dr. Prachi explained to them that this was not related to their upbringing at all but was related to the problem in the fluid drainage of the eye which was a defect in the structure of Faiz’s eye since birth. She explained to them that surgery was the best option to control this problem and save Faiz’s vision. Dr. Prachi further explained how the surgery involved creating an alternative drainage beneath the transparent outer covering (called conjunctiva) of the eyes.
Though it was a difficult decision for them they followed Dr.Prachi`s advice and Faiz underwent glaucoma surgery at 5 months of age. Faiz is now 5 years old and studying in a normal school like all the other kids of his age. Faiz’s parents thanked Dr. Prachi profusely for the timely diagnosis and management of their kid. “We must confess”, Faiz’s parents told Dr. Prachi later, “We were not sure if we wanted to make our five month old undergo a surgery at such a young age. But we cannot imagine where Faiz would be today if he had not undergone the surgery.”
Though childhood glaucoma is (thankfully) uncommon, not detecting it in time can cause the disease to progress to cause irreversible blindness. Having excessive tearing, sensitivity to light, excess eye blinking especially in bright light, red irritated eyes or large bulky eyes may be some of the signs that your child has glaucoma. If you do suspect that your child displays any of these signs, it is best that you let an expert pediatric ophthalmologist examine your child’s eyes.
Dr. Prachi Agashe is a Pediatric Ophthalmologist in Mumbai who has a lot of experience with diagnosing and treating glaucoma in children. To contact Dr. Prachi Agashe, call 022 42435000 or click here to book an appointment at Agashe Pediatric SuperSpeciality Care in Kurla.