Help Caleb Fight for His Sight!
Team Member: Jason Mascarelli
Michelle L'Esperance wrote -When Caleb was just 2, he suffered a traumatic eye injury with scissors. We were told at the time of his accident, on a scale of 1-10, his injury was an 11, and to not expect the surgeons to be able to save his eye. His left eye was extensively damaged (missing his brain by just millimeters) and he spent 3 months in the hospital while undergoing extensive eye reconstruction. His lens was demolished, his cornea trashed, and we were prepared for the worst. 13 surgeries later, his surgeon was able to do the unthinkable and save his eye! Though his lens and cornea were not able to be saved, they could be replaced at a later time. However, he would have a long road ahead of him. He was put on a waiting list for a donor, but before he could have the transplant, he would still need 4 more surgeries to remove scarring and cataracts which had developed from the injury. Once those were finished, it was then a waiting game to see when he would get a donor for the cornea transplant. Until then, there was nothing to protect his eye from the sun but a hard solid patch which he had to wear at all times. He could not go outside. He could not be a normal kid.
Finally, we received the call they had a donor and scheduled his transplant. The surgery was successful, and though he still could not put a lens in the eye( he was too young) we were given a contact to help act as a lens, so he could begin to live as a normal kid. He also had to wear special protective glasses, and would need these the rest of his life to protect his right eye as well. The aftermath of the injury, also left him with cataracts and glaucoma in that eye,. It took 2 years for him to be able to go outside and play as other kids do. Even still, his ordeal was not over. He went through extreme vision therapy, and began to gain vision in his eye again. Though he has always struggled with the pressure in his eye, and requires medication not typically used for kids to control it, things were going well.
During his Christmas break, he began complaining of extreme pain in his eye and started having trouble with going outside. Even indoors, he complained everything was too bright, and what little vision he did have was quickly going away. When we looked at his transplant, we could see it was beginning to look cloudy, and his entire eye was swollen and red. Our worst fears were brought to life when his specialist confirmed his transplant was beginning to reject and decompose. His pressure was also frighteningly high. He was immediately put on steroid drops to help keep the transplant from failing which needed to be put in every 2 hours around the clock. He was also put on another glaucoma medication to help control the pressure. This now meant Caleb had to use 4 different eye drops, all different times of the day.
At his next appointment, we were given more bad news.....the steroids were not going to save the transplant-it was no longer good. This is why he had been losing vision along with becoming extremely light sensitive again. However, the steroids could help keep the transplant going as much as it could, and also helps keep the pressure and swelling down until he can get a new one, and though we are unsure of exactly how long the waiting list will be, we know one thing-the cost will be great.
The road ahead is uncertain, so we are trying to raise the money we need to cover medical expenses that our insurance doesn't cover, travel to specialists, and any other expense we have which will help us be able to give Caleb the best chance possible at regaining his sight. With a new transplant, he can have a lens put back in, and restart vision therapy.
Caleb is only 13, and full of life and love for everyone around him. Despite everything, he remains positive that everything will work out in the end. Please help us in making sure he can receive the care he needs, and the possibility of regaining his sight back. Any donations are greatly appreciated!! If all you can do is share this with friends and family, that is more than enough!! Thank you!