Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Baby Blues

Yesterday (12/7) Ellie had her annual ophthalmology appointment.  First off, an annual appointment?!  Really?  She cannot possibly be old enough for an annual appointment.  Everyone says it goes fast and they are not kidding.

1 Year Ago
Okay, back on track. Eyes.  Ellie's eyes are fantastic.  Gorgeous and big and blue.  Very expressive. She has no need for glasses. . .yet.  Up to 50% of children with DS will require glasses at some point in their lives.  Some of these children need glasses due to far-sightedness or near-sightedness.  However, other issues that are more predominant among our genetically enhanced kiddos include an astigmatism, nystagmus, and strabismus.

Then of course there is the other genetic factors--familial vision problems.  Andrew has nice thick glasses.  I like to call him the naughty professor when he goes without contacts. Oops, too much info!

Very Handsome, yes?

I survived the elementary school years sans glasses, but ended up with them in college--vertical astigmatism but 20/20 vision.  Ellie's Gpa Bruns has graduated trifocals.  Yep, trifocals. (and is color-blind--I can pass that on to my male children)

That's my Daddy.  Isn't he handsome?
I aspire to be as good as a photographer as him.

However, my brother escaped the visual impairment gene as has my Aunt Peggy who also has DS.  So while Dr. B can go on and on about the high potential of the Bear-Bear needing glasses, I just think it is a good thing she doesn't need them now.  Can you imagine her keeping those puppies on?

Ellie Bear, bringing destruction wherever she goes.

Astigmatism: abnormal curvature of the eye lens.  Can be horizontal (common) or vertical (less common)

Strabismus: when the eyes do not line up when trying to focus.  aka lazy eye or cross-eye

Nystagmus: involuntary eye movement.  Usually involves both eyes.  

Fun Fact: infants up to 6 weeks of age will naturally have various movements of the eyes such as crossing.


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