Jackson's fight for sight

15 December 16

written by:

Heather Fanning

(more articles)

Jackson’s story living with leber congenital amaurosis (LCA)

Jackson Coghlan was diagnosed with Leber’s congential amaurosis (LCA), a retinal degenerative condition, in 2008 aged two and half months.

Jackson’s parents, Alicia and Kevin, first noticed that something was wrong with his sight, as he wasn’t really focusing. Scarring on Jackson’s retina was detected and he was referred to Moorfield’s Eye Hospital.

The family saw Professor Tony Moore and it was during this appointment that Jackson was diagnosed with LCA. The condition affects Jackson’s central vision and he has some peripheral vision remaining.

Kevin said: “We didn’t really know what the condition was, so there was a lot of blame, we were blaming ourselves thinking what did we do wrong?”

Alicia said: “With Jackson being blind I was worried that he would be excluded and find it difficult to communicate in the same way as other children do. However, that couldn’t be further from the truth, as Jackson is so confident and loves meeting new people.”

The family turned to Fight for Sight to find out about eye research into Jackson’s condition. 

Alicia added: “We’re determined that the condition would not define Jackson – we don’t want him to be known as the blind boy, there’s so much more to him than his sight. Our mission as parents is to make Jackson as confident as possible. Jackson doesn’t know any difference and it actually affects other people more than it does him – we’ve even had strangers bursting into tears. 

“We knew that there wasn’t an immediate cure but we just wanted to start doing something and it feels like we are helping find a cure for Jackson’s and others like him by raising funds for Fight for Sight.”

Leber congenital amaurosis

What is it?

Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA) is the term used for a group of inherited eye conditions that cause blindness or severe vision loss in early childhood. It is one of the most common causes of blindness in children, affecting around two or three of every 100,000 newborns.

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