Lifestyle

Baby Russell will go blind without operation

ALL SMILES: Little Russell Sim needs numerous eye operations before his first birthday. Russell was born with congenital glaucoma. Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail
ALL SMILES: Little Russell Sim needs numerous eye operations before his first birthday. Russell was born with congenital glaucoma. Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail Mike Knott

A BUNDABERG mother is crying out for help to save the eyesight of her four-month-old baby before time runs out.

Alison Foody said her son, Russell Sim, was a healthy bundle of joy when he was born but at just three months of age the family's lives changed dramatically.

"I put him to bed a happy bub on the Friday night only to wake up the next morning to see Russell's right eye was completely grey in colour - it was just smoky grey and we couldn't see the whites of his eye," Ms Foody said.

"We rushed him up to the hospital straight away where they said we had to get him to Brisbane as soon as possible as he has congenital glaucoma."

The mother-of-six said she was frightened and just wanted to make sure her baby would be okay but didn't know what it would mean for her sons eyesight.

"In Brisbane we saw eye specialist, Dr Chaing, who advised us the only way to save his sight was to undergo a number of operations," Ms Foody said.

"He has now had his first of at least eight operations which he will need to have by the time he is 12 months old.

"The operation releases eye pressure and we found out his right eye nerve is already damaged."

She said little Russell's eyes needed four operations in each and was concerned if he didn't get them soon he would end up blind. The operations can only be done one at a time and would be spread over the next 12 months.

"It will be irreversible blindness if we can't get all the operations done," Ms Foody said.

"I realise this will come at a cost and need help - but I can't seem to find it here in Bundaberg."

Ms Foody said she had approached a number of Bundaberg charities but they were unable to assist her with costs involved and she said she was on the patient travel subsidy scheme (PTSS) at Bundaberg Hospital but there was a delay in it being refunded and the cost was a lot more then it offered.

"We have to go down for each operation and check ups in between, it's hard when I have a family I have to leave behind here as well," Ms Foody said.

"We are trying to fundraise by selling stuff at the Shalom Markets and we have set up a my cause fundraising page which can be found at http://www.mycause.com.au and searching: Save Russell's eyesight.

"I will love him the same if he does go blind but I want to give him everything I can and hopefully we can save his eyesight."

The youngster will continue to wear sunglasses to protect his eyes which are sensitive to light and his mother gives him a number of eye drops daily to assist in reducing the pressure caused by the disease as they hope someone can offer help.

What is glaucoma?

GLAUCOMA is the name given to a group of eye diseases in which the optic nerve at the back of the eye is destroyed.
Bundaberg ophthalmologists Jai Panchapakesan said glaucoma could cause tunnel vision if left untreated and in some patients could lead to complete blindness.
"Congenital glaucoma is when a baby is born with it," Dr Panchapakesan said.
"Glaucoma is when there is higher pressure in the eye which damages the optic nerve.
"This can lead to a complete loss of vision."
Dr Jai said treatment in babies would be surgery but in older adults it would be a last resort.
He said the eye disease could occur in any baby and genetic links were not yet fully understood.
Over 300,000 Australians have glaucoma. While it is more common as people age, it can occur at any age and as the population becomes older, the proportion of glaucoma patients is increasing.
 

Topics:  editors picks russell



10 best street art spots to take an Insta selfie

IF YOU are in need of a few trendy new Instagram snaps, then get your phone and selfie-stick ready and head to Brisbane.

Where to find the best coffee

Strauss is known for its superb brew.

COFFEE snobbery is at an all-time high.

Theatre royalty graces Brisbane stage

Don't miss Charles Edwards in this incredible theatre performance.

WHEN acting royalty comes to town, you sit up and take notice.

Don’t go chasing waterfalls…find them on these drives!

The Scenic Rim is just one place nearby that you'll love.

BRISBANE isn’t all bright lights and city slickers.

Your boots are made for walking these tours

Brisbane Greeters tours are a great way to learn the local history of the city.

YOU don’t need a bike or bus for a seriously good tour of Brisbane.

Discover Brisbane’s laneway gems

Brisbane's laneways will surprise you.

NOT all of Brisbane City is as it seems…

Drink where the cool kids do this summer

There are a bunch of new bars open in Brisbane, make sure you're there!

CHECK out these new funky bars.

'Big love' as hundreds turn out to farewell Tremaine

HE HAD STYLE: Tremaine Tairawhiti was farewelled by hundreds on Monday, February 27, 2017.

"Teammate, serial pest, but most importantly, a brother”

Queensland abortion push: Both bills withdrawn

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Deputy Premier Jackie Trad.

Pyne has withdrawn his abortion reform bills

Bundy's got a new distillery

SPIRIT SHINES: The team behind Bundaberg's newest distillery and brewery, Rick Prosser (spirits), Michael Nash (sales/marketing) and Paul Mark (beer/cider).

Kalki Moon set to rise

Local Partners

‘IT’S A LITTLE SAD’: Trump makes Oscars bungle all about him

PRESIDENT Trump has figured out how the biggest moment of the Oscars went so wrong. Surprise surprise, it’s because of him.

Lama and Sarah’s ‘epic’ MKR fail

My Kitchen Rules contestants Lama and Sarah.

Tempers flare as Lebanese feast turns into an epic fail.

Oscars 2017: How did biggest award get stuffed up?

Presenter Warren Beatty shows the envelope with the actual winner for best picture as host Jimmy Kimmel, left, looks on at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. The winner was originally announced as La La Land, but was later corrected to Moonlight.

'Guys in headsets starting buzzing around. They took the envelope.'

Lisa Curry can't marry her fiance

Lisa Curry breaks down in the jungle.

Lisa Curry says she can’t get married to her fiance

The true cause of the Oscars bungle

Faye Dunaway, left, and Warren Beatty present the award for best picture at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.

The Oscars ended with a moment that left everyone speechless.

HUGE OSCARS FAIL: Wrong film handed Best Picture award

Presenter Warren Beatty shows the envelope with the actual winner for best picture as host Jimmy Kimmel, left, looks on at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. The winner was originally announced as La La Land, but was later corrected to Moonlight.

IN A monumental stuff-up, La La Land incorrectly named Best Picture.

Blue Heelers' Ditch Davey joins 800 Words cast

Ditch Davey joins the cast of 800 Words as Terry, the younger brother of George, played by Erik Thomson.

George Turner's brother, Terry, arrives to Weld with a 'few demons'

Casino boss loses $4m on waterfront Sunshine Coast home

The owner of this stunning Noosa home accepted much less than he had initially wanted for the home.

When illness struck owner forced to try and cash out of property

Mining homes dive: $600k homes sell for $120k-$300k

18 Yeates Street, Moranbah sold for $135,000 in December, after being repossessed by a bank. The owners bought for $545,000 in August, 2011.

The economy still has two speeds, but with a painful twist

Growing optimism in realty markets

Work on the gas pipeline at the Bundaberg Port.

Market shifting from buyers' market to vendor

Mackay's property market climbing like a Rocket Man

Renewed confidence in Mackay means more homes are being snapped up by those eager to plant their roots in the region.

There's movement in the real estate sector and it's all positive.

'Why we drove 800km to buy a treehouse with a disco ball'

The new owners have planned a few updates, but will stick with much of the original design.

A couple travelled almost 800km for the home of their dreams.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!