At 3.5 years old, Ryan was screened by the Assistance League of Amador Valley (ALAV). He was one out of four boys in his classroom to receive a referral for an eye doctor! Prior to the screening, Ryan’s parents did not suspect that he had a vision problem. His mother, Izabela, noticed that he was a little sensitive to light and would close his eyes to shield them from the light, so they got him sunglasses. She also noticed that one of his eyes would turn the other way, but these signs did not lead her to suspect any major eye problems.

It turned out that Ryan had cataract and amblyopia! As soon as his parents found out they were very proactive in getting him the proper care; in fact, they took him all the way to the Storm Eye Clinic for Children in South Carolina to get cataract surgery last July.

Today Ryan, now 4 years old, is a different boy. His mom describes him as more engaged, more active, more stable, and more confident! He wears glasses and is undergoing patching to treat his amblyopia. His mom says that they may not have caught the problem soon enough if the ALAV had not conducted the screening at Ryan’s school. His family is very grateful for the screening. The other three boys in his class are now wearing glasses as well!

Like many parents, Ryan’s did not suspect that vision problems were the cause of his behaviors such as shielding his eyes from the light. A combination of increasing awareness of children’s vision problems and ensuring that children are vision screened starting at age 3 is critical to the success of PBNC’s Children’s Vision Screening Program.