Friday, March 26, 2010
Leukaemia and anisometropia
Thrice a week, I'd go to the paediatric ward to give questionnaires to parents with children having leukaemia requiring chemotherapy. The medication is administered through a procedure called lumbar puncture. In most occasions, the procedure is painful and scary. To get a clearer picture, try to imaging a big needle poking you at the back, straight to the spinal cord. Of course, the child is given sedation and local anaesthesia but they can only help so much.
Anyway, today is one of the days I dragged myself to the ward. While the mother filled in the form, I pretended to write something in my Moleskine while I sketched her and the little boy. He's in remission (cancer free period) and is on maintenance chemo. He was running around at one time, doing his homework the other. Then it's his turn to go in for the jab. He immediately hugged his mother but tried to look brave. I asked the mum whether he'd protested every time he knew he's coming to the hospital, she said no. What a brave lil boy!
Today I'm also a patient. I had an appointment with the hospital optometrist because i had some problems with my new glasses. So she dilated my pupils to relax my ciliary muscles. This was to rule out any accommodative problems. In the end, she said that my blurred vision when I wore the new glasses was caused by anisometropia ( difference of power of more than 200 between the eyes) Apparently, the eye with much higher power has adapted itself to only 'see' far stuff, and the lower power eye only sees near stuff. So I think it's sort of like amblyopia( lazy eye) that kids can have. The optometrist said that the only solution was to wear contact lens. Finally I have a legitimate reason to be vain! But the bad news is that I can't have perfect binocular vision, which means I most probably can't be a microscopic surgeon next time. This is sad cuz I think ENT and opthalmology are interesting.