BEIJING (AP) — A 6-year-old Chinese boy whose eyes were gouged out received implants Tuesday at a hospital in southern China owned by a Hong Kong doctor who offered the operation after learning about the brutal attack.
The implants are a precursor to fitting the boy with prosthetic eyes that will look and move more like normal eyes, but do not restore vision. Doctors at the C-MER (Shenzhen) Dennis Lam Eye Hospital also plan to fit Guo Bin — nicknamed Bin Bin — with navigation sensors that would allow the boy to get around on his own in familiar places.
"As his parents, we are full of hope," the boy’s father, Guo Zhiping, said over the phone while waiting for the surgery to finish. "We have yet to tell him that his vision would be lost forever."
Inggie Ho, an assistant to Dr. Dennis Lam Shun-Chiu, in whose hospital Bin-Bin received the treatment, said the surgery went well and he should be fitted with prosthetic eyes in four to six weeks.
Ho said Lam decided to treat the boy free of charge after learning about the horrific case.
Many questions surrounding the Aug. 24 attack on the boy remain unanswered.
Police in the boy’s home province of Shanxi say they suspect the boy’s aunt gouged out his eyes. But they have not identified a motive and the woman has since committed suicide. The boy’s relatives have said they don’t believe she could have carried out the attack.
Guo said the family does not think the police report is credible, because the aunt, who was working in a local factory on the day of the assault, would not have had time to commit the crime. News reports have suggested family disputes, but Guo said there had not been any.
Guo said Bin Bin and the family arrived in Shenzhen on Sunday and would stay there as long as needed.
The flight to Shenzhen excited the little boy, Guo said.
"He had never traveled in a plane before."