Help for boy who lost eyes in attack

HONG KONG - An eye doctor has volunteered to help the six-year-old mainland boy who had his eyes scooped out last week to regain sight, at least partially, by implanting artificial eyes.

Eminent Hong Kong eye doctor Dennis Lam Shun-chiu said on a radio programme on Monday that he had sent a medical team, consisting of experts in artificial-eye implants, to visit the boy, known as Binbin, a few days earlier.

The surgery will cost between HK$50,000 (S$8,200) and HK$60,000, but Dr Lam has offered to do it for free.

"My wife and I watched the news on TV and felt very sad... So I want to do something for him," Shenzhen Economic Daily quoted him as saying.

Dr Lam is known for being a long-time volunteer helping to eliminate cataract blindness in mainland China.

The medical team sent to visit the six-year-old reported that the boy's eyes had been gouged out, with the corneas removed and his retina cells necrotised. Eyeball or cornea donations might not help him regain sight.

Dr Lam, however, explained that Binbin's visual system was mature and that memory remains in his visual cortex. He said current medical technology makes it possible for the boy to at least regain partial sight.

In short, the theory is to capture images with the artificial eyes and transmit that data to the visual area of the brain.