Adventures in Ophthalmology 

Yesterday O had a check up with her Ophthalmologist to assess how she is progressing with her newest prescription (updated in September to R+4.50 and L +7.00 and a new diagnosis of slight astigmatism).

O is usually well behaved at appointments. She was particularly cooperative yesterday and it makes it so much easier on me, as my emotions are always running high at the Ophthalmologist’s office. Since she’s older and so communicative (I wonder where she gets that?) they now have her identify shapes and letters projected onto a mirror from a screen on the back wall (as shown below). O is seeing much better with her new prescription and is closer to 20/20 vision than ever! The doc says her muscles are responding appropriately and that she can see even further down the chart to smaller lines she’s never seen before! He looked at me and told me it was “the absolute best case scenario for her.”

O does need to patch 4 hours each day again. Her left eye is crossing minimally and we need to keep things balanced for her. The good news is that her brain is using both eyes almost evenly! Hubby and I are thrilled and very proud of our girl!

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New Sights: An Update on O’s Eyes

O just had a check up at the Ophthalmologist this week. As you may recall from my original vision post, O is seen by the same doctor who treated my husband 30+ years ago. The doctor just moved to a new office not far from the old one… but we felt like we were in a whole new world. The new office was a stark contrast from the old school office we were used too. But I was pleasantly surprised to see that our doc kept his old equipment along with adding all kinds of new technology. Below is his classic set of equipment, followed by the new stuff.     O did a little better at identifying the shapes this time…. because they were actual shapes. His old tests were of a classic desktop telephone, a duck and a stick figure on a bike. Most kids didn’t even know what the phone was! But I also think the thinner lines in these illustrations simplified it for O. O brought along her doctor kit. She often pretends to be looking in our eyes. I’m glad she’s so interested! And she continues to be very cooperative and well behaved for the doc and nurse staff.

Her exam showed that her lense prescription is doing its job and her muscles are responding well to patching. We were told to continue patching the right eye 3 hours each day and an appointment was scheduled for later in the summer. Over all, all is well!

What’s new with O – Fall 2014

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It’s been a while since I’ve done an update on our sweet little O. It’s true what they say about time flying. We’ve been having a blast with O and all of her toddler adventures. And I’ve just realized she’s not so little anymore.

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We headed to the pumpkin patch as a family last week and she could have cared less about the pumpkins. I practically had to make her sit for a pumpkin picture. She was all about the hayride and pony rides. And she also attended a birthday party with pony rides. Those cowgirl boots are getting worn in. Get this: she wants a pony for Christmas. Too bad that doesn’t fit in Santa’s sleigh (or his budget).

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She’s looking less and less like a toddler and more like a kid. O also now has quite the fashion sense… this season she’s big on side ponytails, vests, jeggings, Toms, cowboy boots, rain boots, and bracelets galore! You know, if you take your fashion cues from almost-3-year-olds.

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She always puts her shoes right next to mine. And on rain days she begs to go “puddle jumping” on the way to the bus stop. Being two and a half is so much fun!

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O has also taken up painting. She’s always liked coloring and drawing. Up until now we used Magnadoodles, chalk boards, computer paper and notebooks for art. On a recent trip to Ikea we found a little set of watercolors complete with brushes and water cups. I also grabbed a roll of paper. She’s been a painter ever since. Great for patching time too!

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This was the first year O was really into Halloween. For the past two years we had chosen her costume (bumble bee and Elmo). This year she knew she wanted to be Elsa (from the movie Frozen … in case you live in a hole) for months. I found a costume in early September at Target for a cool $20 and I jumped all over it… because as I suspected all the other Elsa dresses I saw later were double that price a few weeks later. Due to the weather, we incorporated a fur vest into Elsa’s wardrobe. I think it worked out. You can’t tell in the pictures, but she insisted on wearing her cowboy boots under that dress. Of course, I was Batman… er, um… Batmom?

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She made it to a dozen or so houses… that’s a lot of walking for those little legs. O had more fun handing out our candy and treats. You may recall that she has moderate food allergies (milk and eggs) so we participated in the Teal Pumpkin Project that I blogged about earlier this month. We handed out spider rings, vampire teeth and (practically every allergy free) Dum Dum suckers.

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In addition to choosing her own costume, O is old enough to tell us what kind of face she’d like on her pumpkin. She chose Hello Kitty. It was a bit of a challenge to carve, but I forgot how much I love to carve pumpkins until we started!

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As a special surprise we treated O to a trip to Disney on Ice. We didn’t tell her until we arrived at the show and she was so excited. Below is her “excited” face.

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Hubby and I had fun too. I was impressed with the show! Worth every penny. Even this $12 foam crown. It came with cotton candy… which she hated and Mommy and Daddy devoured.

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O also went to the Ophthalmologist last month. We learned that her prescription increased to +5.00 in the right eye and +5.50 in the left eye. We weren’t really surprised by the increase because she’s growing and changing. She was so small (18 months) at her last major exam that it can be hard to get completely accurate measurements. We’ve ordered he new frames and lenses and are awaiting their arrival. She will still be patching 3 hours a day (over the right eye) for the Accomadative Esotropia and Ambloyopia. She was being silly in the mirror when we were ordering her new glasses.

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xo, Hilda

 

Posh Patching

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O had another appointment at her Pediatric Ophthalmologist to check up on how her glasses are working for her. You can read my post about O, her condition and our experiences in Pediatric Opthalmology here. The doctor was impressed with how well she has adjusted to her glasses and even more impressed with how much she embraces her “dasses” as she calls them. Not only does she leave them on, but she will adjust them for comfort or wiggle them on her face to be funny. My favorite part of the appointment was when the doctor was using a light to guide her eyes in different directions and O was opening her mouth saying “Ahhh!”. She went to the dentist with me the other day and the hygienist had her sit and watch my cleaning while she explained each step so that next time O can have a smooth first dentist visit. At the dentist’s visit, we taught her to open her mouth wide and say “Ahhh”… so she obviously was paying attention. Too bad she applied it at the wrong doctor’s office but it made me laugh!

The results of the visit were fairly simple. First, her glasses are working well for her. She seems comfortable with them and the prescription seems right. Also, her left eye is responding to the prescription (meaning its not crossing as much when she is wearing her glasses).  Second, there is room for improvement. Her left eye is the weak eye (with the +4.50 prescription and the esotropia/crossing) and could still use some strengthening. So the doctor wants her to “patch” for 4 hours a day until our next appointment in March. Patching means she will have her strong eye (in her case the right eye) covered with either a cloth patch over the glasses or a sticky band-aid style patch directly over the eye. Covering the strong eye will give the weak eye (her left) an opportunity to strengthen itself and encourage the brain to utilize the weaker left eye.

Fortunately, O has been cooperative wearing the patch. Although we’ve only done it twice so far, she hasn’t attempted to rip it off. The first time I put it on her I tried to make it fun. She likes to play with my make up brushes so while we were playing with the brushes and tickling each others cheeks, I took out the sticky patch and presented it to her. I put it on over her eye while we were looking in the mirror. I let her touch it and fiddle with it for a moment and then I slipped her glasses on so she could see herself in the mirror. Her response was “Oh, woo woo!” which in our house means “So pretty!” …For me I felt like that was a success. She was physically comfortable AND she felt like she looked pretty. Don’t get me wrong, her being pretty isn’t what is important. What is important is that she didn’t feel like she looks different than her usual self or funny. It doesn’t hurt that the sticky patches are printed with fun designs so it’s like a pretty new shirt for her. You can see an example in the photo above. I did give a feeble attempt to have her try the fabric patch over the glasses but she repeatedly just tore her glasses off. To me, thats a fail. It seemed easier to get her used to the patch and then put the glasses on over it. I also think that the sticky patch is less irritating because it stays still on the face, whereas the fabric one moves a little as she smiles, talks and plays so she feels it against her skin more.

Overall things are going well for her and I’ve been told by several professionals and friends who have had similar experiences that realizing her condition so early and treating at such young age is a huge advantage.