The 57-year-old Irishman was blinded two years ago after an aluminum explosion at a recycling plant, AFP reported Thursday. His sight has been miraculously restored after doctors inserted his son’s tooth in his eye.
After doctors told McNichol there was nothing more they could do for him, he heard about an offbeat operation called Osteo-Odonto-Keratoprosthesis (OOKP) being performed in England.
OOKP, first performed in Italy in the 1960s, involves creating an artificial cornea by using the patient’s tooth and surrounding bone as a support, AFP reported.
McNichol’s son Robert, 23, donated a tooth, its root and part of his jaw for his father’s surgery. McNichol’s right eye socket was rebuilt, and a lens was inserted into a hole drilled in Robert’s tooth. The procedure required two surgeries lasting a total of 15 hours.
“It is pretty heavy going,” McNichol told RTE state radio. “I have enough sight to get around. I have come out from complete darkness to be able to do simple things.”
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