Tags: cellphone | photo | eye | cancer | flash | toddler

Cellphone Photo Eye Cancer: Camera Flash Reveals Toddler's Illness

By    |   Tuesday, 12 May 2015 04:52 PM

An overexposed cellphone photo recently revealed a rare form of eye cancer in an Illinois 2-year-old.

The boy’s mother, Julie Fitzgerald, told WREX-TV that she had noticed something in the back her son’s eye and took to the Internet for answers. She came across an article about a woman who saw a white eye in an overexposed photo rather than the typical red eye, and it turned out to be cancer. So, Fitzgerald picked up her cellphone to take a closer look at her son, Avery.

"I took a picture and I did not want to take the picture because I had this dreaded feeling in the pit of my stomach and I took the picture and boom. His whole pupil was just white and that's when I knew," Fitzgerald said, according to WREX-TV.

A visit to a specialist confirmed that Avery had multiple tumors covering 75 percent of his left eye. The boy’s eye was removed to get rid of the retinoblastoma.

Fitzgerald has advice for other parents: "Trust a momma's gut."

The discovery came just in time.

"If we did not get this eye out, the cancer would spread to his blood and to his brain," Fitzgerald said, according to ABC News. "Our lives went from normal to cancer to a cancer survivor in three weeks. It turned out to be our worst nightmare but it saved our son's life."

ABC News chief health and medical editor Dr. Richard Besser said that if the early warning signs are missed, retinoblastoma is usually fatal.

Michael Stewart, professor and chair of Ophthalmology at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida, cautioned that while cellphone photos are not a definitive indicator of the disease, concerns should not be ignored.

"A lot of photos taken will show one or both pupils are white and subsequently an eye exam discloses that it's a normal eye," Stewart said, according to USA Today. "It's much better to do an exam that has negative findings than to pass up an exam and not have it looked at."

Twitter users were amazed by the story.

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An overexposed cellphone photo recently revealed a rare form of eye cancer in an Illinois 2-year-old.
cellphone, photo, eye, cancer, flash, toddler
Tuesday, 12 May 2015 04:52 PM
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