BBC Home
Explore the BBC
BBC News
Launch consoleBBC NEWS CHANNEL
Last Updated: Thursday, 28 February 2008, 08:24 GMT
Son's tooth helps man gain vision
eye
The tooth holds a lens in place in the eye socket
A man has regained partial sight after surgeons inserted one of his son's teeth into an eye socket.

Robert McNichol, 57, from County Sligo on Ireland's west coast, was injured in an explosion at his waste recycling business two years ago.

Doctors said nothing could be done, but he found an expert in the UK performing pioneering surgery known as OOKP.

It treats severe cases of blindness by using a tooth to hold a man-made lens in place in the eye socket.

Mr McNichol's son Robert Jnr, 23, volunteered one of his teeth when he heard about the procedure.

"I do believe I look like the Terminator," said Mr McNichol, originally from Carlisle but living in Ireland since 1990.

"My son was over the moon that he was able to do it.

"He said you can have all my teeth if it can make you see.

"If there was such a thing as an eye transplant, I think everyone in my family said you could have one of my eyes."

The operation was carried out at the Sussex Eye Hospital in Brighton over several months ending last December.

The tooth was removed, chiselled through and a lens placed in its core.

It was then inserted into Mr Nichol's right eye after a series of operations.

Doctors said they could not replicate the procedure on his left eye as it was too badly damaged.

While he cannot see fully, the father of eight hopes that with time his sight will gradually improve and he can do everyday activities.



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific