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Mum spots her baby son's eye cancer thanks to a camera phone

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eye cancer baby
A mum has revealed she's thankful for being a 'crazy picture mom' after photos she took of her son helped detect his eye cancer.

Andrea Temarantz, a mum-of-two from the US, probably saved her son's life by taking pictures of him.

Like any other proud mum, Andrea often took photos of her four-month-old son Ryder, but she started noticing a strange white glow in his eye in the photos she took.



Athough she initially blamed it on the quality of her camera phone, the glow was still there even when she used other cameras.

'I just chalked it up to a bad camera phone', Andrea said in an interview with ABC News. 'But even after I used a new Nikon D3300 DSLR my cousin got me for Christmas, the white glow was still there.'

That's when she decided it was time to take Ryder to the doctor, where he was diagnosed with retinoblastoma in his left eye.

The weird glow seen in the photos was a white tumor mass in the back of Ryder's eye that reflects light from camera flashes.

Thankfully, the tumor in Ryder's eye has not spread to other organs, so he has 99% of recovering and will still have some vision in the affected eye after treatment.



Andrea told the story in a Facebook post, where she also urged parents to check their children's eyes, especially because she knows how lucky Ryder is for having his cancer detected early.

'I know I'm a crazy picture mom but I've never been so thankful to be that person. Ryder's eyes would likely not have been checked at his 4 month appointment if I hadn't said something. Something like this in the eye can be minimal or very dangerous', Andrea wrote.

'Please pay attention not only to your kids in photos but to your friends kids when they post. Someone simply saying 'hey, that glow might not be normal. You should have it checked' could really help someone else detect this early. They have definitely stressed how lucky we are that we found it early. Keep an eye on their eyes please.'



According to the NHS, retinoblastoma is a rare type of eye cancer, and usually affects children younger than five. Because of early detection and treatment, over 98% of children in the UK successfully recover.

However, the illness can be deadly if not caught early. One of Ryder's doctors told ABC News that 50% of children with retinoblastoma died worldwide last year: 'It's one of those cancers that can be fatal if not detected early, so it's great that his mom noticed it early and got it checked out.'

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To find out more about retinoblastoma, please visit the NHS information page.

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