Today, on the 11th January 2008 we found out once and for all that Maxwell's blindness is beyond help. On arrival in Kenya Dr. Antony Goodhead, a specialist ophthalmologist from the Johannesburg Animal eye Hospital, with years of experience working on wildlife and domestic animals throughout the world, noticed that Maxwell's eyes where sunken and smaller than he would have liked to see and this disturbed him, suggesting additional problems over and above cataracts. After extensive ultrasound examinations today very sadly it was confirmed that Maxwell’s problem was one of multiple congenital complications with both his eyes and that they were beyond repair.
Dr.Goodhead believes that this is most likely a degenerating developmental defect from birth - as the ultra sound revealed that not only did he have cataracts, but he had a hyperechoic mass in the anterior part of the globe and then the posterior segment of the globe was filled with extremely dense point-like hyperechoic masses. These masses suggest cellular material filling the entire posterior segment and on movement of the globe this mass which could be blood and degenerate cells could be seen moving about. The retina also appeared to be detached as well. Hence no amount of surgery could ever restore sight to Maxwell.
We had Shida in the next door stockade and were able to examine his eyes with the ultrasound as a comparison to those of Maxwell, and the marked difference was clearly visible.
It was very disappointing for all of us who held hope. We now have to focus on plan B to ensure that Maxwell has a protected and safe quality of life despite his handicap.