Success Stories

See Child Vision Center through the eyes of our patients.

Tyler’s Story

A recent experience of one of Pediatric Eye Specialists’ ophthalmologists, Dr. Alan Norman, illustrates the kind of innovation that will be possible on a larger scale through the Child Vision Center.

Dr. Norman was called in for a consultation on Tyler*, a premature infant in critical condition in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Cook Children’s Medical Center. He was born four months early, barely weighing one pound.

Dr. Norman was asked to evaluate the child for retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), a potentially blinding condition seen only in premature infants. Indeed, the child had the most severe form of the condition.

Thanks to Dr. Norman’s role as investigator and Dr. Michael Hunt’s role as primary investigator in a new treatment trial for ROP, the child had access to the most advanced treatment available at the time. Drs. Norman and Hunt conferred, and after considering all options, they injected the test drug directly into the baby’s eyes.

Fortunately, this procedure reversed the child’s ROP. In this severe case, standard laser treatment would have led to a severe loss of vision.

Tyler is now a 1-year-old and his vision is perfectly normal – a veritable miracle given the child’s history. Tyler now has the chance to lead a healthy life with normal vision.

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Ryan’s Story

Consider the case of Ryan*, 4, a beautiful, thriving child. All was well with Ryan except that he seemed to struggle to see things that were not directly in front of him. Dim light especially seemed to hinder his vision.

His parents had sought care at several major medical institutions and were reassured that everything looked fine. They decided to get another opinion at Pediatric Eye Specialists.

Very shortly into the exam, Dr. Eric Packwood identified a subtle, but troubling sign: pigment cells floating in the eye. He suspected retinal dystrophy and recommended that the family travel to a facility equipped to diagnose and analyze the issue.

The family traveled to Houston, then Baltimore and finally Iowa, where Ryan and his sister were both diagnosed with rod-cone dystrophy, a progressive retinal disease that currently has no cure.

Though distraught by the diagnosis, their parents feel more at peace now that they know why their children struggle visually. They wait, expectantly, for the cure that will likely come in the form of gene therapy.

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*Names have been changed to protect patient privacy.