A YOUNG mum is attempting to save her daughter’s sight by raising £15,000 for a controversial treatment in China.
One-year-old Chloe Wilson, from Broomhouse, was born with septo-optic dysplasia – a rare condition which means her pituitary gland has not developed properly.
As a result, Chloe’s optic nerve is underdeveloped, leaving her with hormone deficiencies and very little vision.
Her parents, Kayleigh Martin and Scott Wilson, both 21, now hope to raise enough money to take her to Shenzhen, China, to undergo a controversial stem-cell treatment not available in the UK.
It comes as the parents of Taylor Johnson, two, from Bathgate, who also suffers from the condition, reached the halfway mark in their efforts to raise funds for the same treatment.
Kayleigh, a nursery assistant, said: “We found out something was wrong when I had the 18-week pregnancy scan, but they didn’t know how badly it was going to affect her.
“Half an hour after Chloe was born, we were feeding her when she stopped breathing and had to be resuscitated. The doctors think that was a direct result of her condition.”
Chloe spent seven weeks in the neonatal unit of Edinburgh Royal Infirmary before she was finally allowed home.
“It was heartbreaking to have to leave her,” said Kayleigh. “We were going to the ERI every day and then just coming back and sleeping.”
Because of her hormone deficiency, Chloe needs weekly blood tests, and will require medication for the rest of her life.
Kayleigh and Scott hope a company in China specialising in stem-cell treatment might help Chloe regain some vision.
The treatment is controversial, with experts arguing it is likely to be unregulated and untested, but Kayleigh said: “The consultants say it’s not something they would recommend, but we’ve spoken to so many families it has helped.
“Chloe’s behind where she should be in terms of development with things like crawling, and I think the lack of vision is stopping her from learning things.
“At £15,000, it is a huge amount of money, but friends and family have been right behind us.”
A fundraising auction and raffle night will be held at the Bainfield Bowling Club, Hutchison Crossway, from 7.30pm on Friday, May 11. Tickets are available on the door.
Tia Aitken, who is raising funds to take her daughter, Taylor Johnson, to China, said: “We will make it to the final mark, but it will be a slow process.”
To donate to Chloe’s treatment, visit “Help us Raise £15,000” on Facebook.