A MOTHER from Solihull is urging parents to ensure their children’s eyes are regularly tested after her son was diagnosed with a life-threatening condition at a routine appointment.
Lucy Gebruers – who sadly lost her partner Peter to cancer on Valentine’s Day of this year – took her two children, Joshua and Amelia, to a routine eye examination in Solihull.
Whilst Amelia’s sight test was normal, Joshua’s test indicated that he was suffering from papilloedema – optic disc swelling cause by increased intracranial pressure.
In The Observer last month, Mrs Gebruers featured with two other Mums from Blossomfield Infants School after three fathers tragically lost their lives to cancer within the space of 12 months.
Chris Preenes lost his valiant battle with cancer just after his 44th birthday last year and David ‘Dave’ Callow lost his brave battle at the age of 33 in January this year.
Since the news of her brothers illness, Amelia has been tirelessly fundraising for The Butterfly AVM Charity and Birmingham Children’s hospital.
Her work has been recognised at the Pride of Britain awards where she claimed the title of Lidl Young Fundraiser of the Year – as featured in the Solihull Observer last month.
Mrs Gebruers is now urging Solihull parents to follow her steps and take their children to regular appointments.
She added: “It wasn’t until we got to the hospital and Joshua underwent various tests that the gravity of the situation escalated and we realised that this could indeed be very serious.
“It was very upsetting.”
An MRI scan revealed that Joshua was suffering from a rare condition called Arteriovenous Malformation (AVM), which puts sufferers at high risk of a stroke.
After undergoing a course of radiotherapy to help reduce the papilloedema, doctors are now confident that after regular check-ups, and additional radiotherapy, Joshua will be free from the condition.
Brad Parkes, store director at Specsavers Solihull, said: “Stories like Joshua’s, although very rare, show how important it is to ensure you and your children visit your optician regularly.
“As well as checking your vison an eye examination can also pick up on a range of medical conditions and so really is a vital health check.
“We advise customers to visit us at least every two years, unless of course they are experiencing any problems in which case they should come in sooner.”