This story came from Natalie. -Ann Z
1 in a 1000 children are living with juvenile arthritis. My 3 year old daughter is one of them. She was diagnosed at 20 months.
Around 20% of these children, particularly young girls, are eventually diagnosed with uveitis. For my daughter, this happened one year after her original diagnosis. It hit fast, and it hit hard. With systemic prednisone, prednisilone eye drops, and an increased dose of methotrexate, we were able to halt the first flare.
Yet, her vision problems were just beginning. Uveitis can cause numerous secondary problems, and my daughter seemed to get most of them.
She has synechia. Even after months of atropine drops her pupils will not fully dilate.
She has a small cataract in her right eye.
She has amblyopia. The vision in her left eye is 20/25 while her right eye has recently improved to 20/200 from 20/400.
She wears glasses for far-sightedness and astigmatism. Yay! A normal childhood issue!
So many problems for such a tiny girl. However, we are not throwing ourselves a pity party. My daughter is strong, brave, and wise beyond her years. She doesn’t remember life before uveitis. I do, and there are times when I feel so very alone in this battle. Patching, medications, appointments – she can’t do any of that alone. We do it for her to save her sight. Some children with uveitis go blind. But not my daughter. At least not today, and not tomorrow either. Right now, in her doctor’s words, she is winning.
You can read more at Natalie’s blog My Teeny Tiny Champion.