An eight-year-old girl who had her eye removed because of cancer has had it replaced with a glittery pink prosthesis.
Daisy Passfield, eight, was diagnosed with a grade D tumor in her retina when she was 14 months old.
She had chemotherapy to shrink the tumor, but unfortunately Daisy relapsed two months after the chemotherapy ended.
The tot’s right eye was removed at the age of two in a four-hour operation after a recent procedure designed to shrink the tumor, the tumor was broken up into different parts and the family didn’t want it to spread.
And after years of wearing blue prosthetic eyes, this summer she opted for pink sparkly prosthetic eyes as she’s a fan of glittery things.
Rather than sticking with a matching blue lens, the confident schoolgirl surprised her family and medics by requesting a new eye in her favorite color – pink glitter.
Now she’s proud to show off her “superhero” eye, which friends say looks like a unicorn or a dragon – much to Daisy’s delight.
Daisy, from Abbots Langley, Hertfordshire, said: “I’m happy because everyone can see my sparkling pink eye.
“I’m so excited to show my sparkling eye to everyone at school.
“I think they will love it as much as I do.
“Everyone I’ve spoken to has said how beautiful it is.
“I’ve been told it looks like a superhero eye, a dragon eye, and a unicorn eye, and I like all of those things.”
Daisy’s mother, Alysia Passfield, 30, said it was “tough” to get a diagnosis for Daisy’s condition.
Alysia said she noticed something was wrong with Daisy when she looked at a picture of her.
She said: “I noticed it in one photo – she had a white glow in her eyes and her eye was glassy.”
The most common symptoms are a white glow in the eye or pupil in low light or when a photo is taken with a flash, and squinting.
In October 2015, she was diagnosed with retinoblastoma – a rare and aggressive form of eye cancer that affects babies and young children, mainly under the age of six.
Alysia said she was “relieved” to finally have a diagnosis, adding, “I knew something was wrong.
“Of course I was upset and a bit shocked.
“Daisy has been absolutely fine, taking it with ease, and she’s on six rounds of chemotherapy to try and shrink the tumor.”
Unfortunately, two months after completing her chemotherapy, Daisy relapsed and started intra-arterial chemotherapy – a newer procedure designed to shrink the tumor.
Intra-arterial chemotherapy is a new method of delivering chemotherapy drugs directly into the eye rather than around the body.
Daisy was given general anesthesia for the treatment, with a catheter inserted through the femoral artery to the ocular artery.
Once the catheter is in place, the chemotherapy drug is delivered through the tube and allowed to act directly on the tumor(s) in the eye.
Instead of shrinking the tumor, the treatment had broken the tumor into separate pieces.
Alysia said, “By September 2016, we made the decision to have her eye removed because the chemo she had had broken the tumor into different parts and we didn’t want the tumor to spread.”
The operation lasted about four hours and Alysia said she was on “autopilot” the entire time.
After the surgery, Daisy was given a black eye that matched her natural eye color.
Daisy got her new eye on July 28th and 22nd.
Alysia said: “Daisy has always been into glitter, makeup and looking pretty.
“We went to our appointment, I told the woman that Daisy has a different colored eye and they said they could do that.”
Alysia said Daisy lived a “perfectly normal” life.
She said: “She’s one of the most confident people I’ve ever met.
“The only thing she can’t do is drive a combine or fly a plane, but I don’t think we ever have to worry about that.”
Daisy has an older sister named Immy Rose, 10, and brother Oakley, four.
Alysia said Immy was “very caring,” adding, “She was one of the most supportive kids when we went through it.”
Reflecting on how Daisy’s diagnosis had affected her, Alysia said: “I don’t really know – it was one of those things you just have to get through.
“We were 23 at the time. We had to do what we had to do and we had to make sure she was okay.”
According to the Childhood Eye Cancer Trust, 50 cases are diagnosed in the UK every year – or one child a week.
It accounts for 3% of all childhood cancers and 10% of cancers in babies under one year old in the UK.