Jacob's story

Jacob’s story with Culver and Glass.


We are supporting the Massey Family in their fundraising for the Macmillan and Cancer research charities. Mr Massey and some family and friends are completing the gruelling Wight way round cycling challenge, whereby they aim to cycle the entire Isle of Wight on the 23rd of September this year.


This is an important challenge for us to support in many ways, one is that it’s a Loughborough family doing a great challenge, a family who attend our practice and have been loyal patients for years and it’s great to support them. The main reason however is little Jacob. A cheeky chappie you just can’t help but be fond of, whose brother first attended practice as a patient. On one occasion when the family were in practice it was discussed as to whether it would be ok to test Jacobs eyes with him being so young (he was not 2 yet) mum and dad were a little concerned about his vision and rightly so. Not all Optometrists will want to test a child so young and often parents are asked to wait a little longer. However Mrs Glass, an experienced Optometrist felt, having listened to the parent’s concerns that she would be asking them to have an examination and so it was booked in.


During the course of the test Mrs Glass found a squint she wished to have further investigated by the hospital, and sent an urgent referral. That referral lead to a long and arduous journey for Jacob and his family, as unfortunately he was then diagnosed with Retinoblastoma. Retinoblastoma is a type of eye cancer that affects young children, mainly under the age of six. Around 50-60 cases are diagnosed in the UK every year – approximately one child a week. 


A terrifying diagnosis for any parent to hear their child is given. Luckily retinoblastoma has one of the best cure rates of all the childhood cancers. In the UK, around 98 per cent of children will survive but early diagnosis is really important. This is where the skills of Mrs Glass were important in helping them get to the hospital for the test.  


Jacob at such a young age then had to attend the Leicester Royal Infirmary and Birmingham children’s hospital to undergo intensive chemotherapy. This meant that often he was unable to go out the house for long periods of time as his still developing immune system had been weakened. He needed a prescription for glasses and being unable to attend the practice our Dispensing Optician Toni would go out to meet him at home to dispense, adjust and repair his spectacles when needed. Over the seven months we have seen this very brave family go through so much and where we can have tried to support them. No Optometrist ever wishes to suspect or discover this, however we feel care goes beyond the diagnosis.


We are pleased to say that Jacob is doing incredibly well and was running around the practice leaving a trail of smiles behind him not so long ago. However we also feel to continue to support this family in their fundraising and in raising awareness in our local community is vital. If you wish to add a donation, or follow their progress please click on the following link, or you may donate to the collection tins in both practices. Thank you


Retinoblastoma is a rare condition but it’s important to know the signs and symptoms. Here is a list of the main symptoms. However not all symptoms are retinoblastoma unique. Also no picture is as good at detecting any eye or sight health issue as having regular examinations with the optometrists. It’s always best practice to ensure the whole family have regular eye examinations.


Signs and symptoms of retinoblastoma


Spotting one of the signs or symptoms of retinoblastoma can be really worrying for any parent or relative. Do remember that retinoblastoma is rare and that all of these symptoms can be caused by other things, but it’s always best to have your child’s eyes checked out by a health professional as soon as possible.


White eye or glow


 You might see a white glow in the eye, a white pupil or white reflection in a photo where a flash has been used, or when your child is in artificial light or a darkish room. This may only be seen once but in some cases it’s present all the time. There are other, more common causes of this.





 A squint or lazy eye, where one eye looks in or out, can sometimes be a symptom of retinoblastoma. In many cases, it’s nothing more than a squint but it’s always worth having it checked out just to be sure.


Red, sore or swollen eye


 Your child’s eye may become very red and inflamed for no obvious reason – and with no sign of infection. 


Change in iris colour


 The iris – the coloured part of the eye – can change colour in one eye, sometimes only in one area.


No red eye

no red eye.jpg


 In a photo where one eye has “red eye” (which is normal), the other eye may look black. This can be a sign that something is not right.


Deterioration in sight


 Your child’s vision may begin to deteriorate, or they may have had poor vision from birth. You may notice that they don’t focus, fix and follow as well as other children of the same age.




Concerned about your child’s vision? Or thinking they are due an eye- examination? Book in to see:


Mrs Glass at our Loughborough practice (Culver and Glass) on 01509212704


Mr Glass at our Long Eaton Practice (Ryley and Evans) on 01159734056