Monday, 14 January 2013


Dawn and Alastair's wee boy, Iain David (called "Indy") is now 16 months old.  He came into the world with the cards stacked against him but, as we saw on our visit to Vancouver, he is getting on just fine.  Indy was diagnosed with a retinoblastoma of his left eye when he was 6 weeks old and had his left eye removed in November 2011. 

He was fitted with a prosthesis in January 2012.  Every 3 months he has to have an examination under anaesthetic to check for any further cancer in the other eye.  The photo above shows Alastair in the prep room with Indy as he awaits the nurses who take him in for the EUA.  I accompanied Alastair and Dawn at the Vancouver Women's and Children's Hospital and was very impressed with how everything was managed. He was neither up nor down after the examination; Dawn was there to breat-feed him as soon as he came round.

Soon after Christmas Indy underwent an operation to graft some fatty tissue from his left thigh into his left eye socket in order to build it up. Again it was the same hospital and doctor and the same routine of fasting, operation and Dawn on hand to breast-feed him when he came round.

The eyelid was stitched shut and was covered with a metal sheild which has small holes in it (for aeration).  He didn't pull at it and, again, was up and about the next day, eating and playing and getting into mischief.

He is just like any other child of 16 months - eating with a spoon (getting it everywhere including his bandages), running around, babbling and turning pages of a book. He moves really well and is very "centred" when he moves up and down stairs i.e. hanging on to the rail properly.  He doesn't walk into walls, or bang himself any more than any other child would.


The eyelid is stitched shut (no prosthesis in);  it is clean and healing well.   (One of the stitches in his leg came out and that involved a visit back to the hospital and a very long wait while the more urgent cases got attended to.) Fortunately Indy (and everyone else) has been free of coughs and colds especially at this time of year.  ( I am sure the fact that Dawn is still breast-feeding has a lot to do with this.)  This means that when a space comes available for doing some surgery he is able to be taken.

His socket healed well.  There is a "keeper" in it to help maintain the shape.  It is made of white (?synthetic?) material and stays in until it is time to replace the prosthesis.

So  Indy is coming on just fine. Alastair and Dawn continue to deal extremely well on a day to day basis looking after his needs especially in relation to keeping the eye clean and protected.  The doctor must be heartened to have parents who are vigilant like this!

Lastly, here is the wee fella on Christmas Eve dressed in his finery as we all went out to dinner.

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