A blind schoolgirl has been able to see shadows up to 10 inches away after just one round of stem-cell treatment in China, her mum said last night.
Nine-year-old Keri Kelly from Buncrana, Co Donegal, was told by doctors that it may take months, or even years, for her to notice any improvement in her sight, if any at all.
But mum Tracey has revealed that Keri has shown remarkable progress after her first round of treatment at the Beike Clinic in Qingdao.
"Before she could only see the shape of someone's hand if it was an inch from their face. But now she can see your hand as far away as 10 inches, which is a huge step," said Tracey.
The news will be welcomed by people all over Ireland who raised more than ?40,000 to send Keri to China for the treatment.
"I cannot put into words how thankful we are to everyone. Hopefully now people can see that all their hard work and kindness may be paying off," Tracey said.
Keri has been blind since birth after being born with optic nerve hypoplasia, which means her optic nerves have never grown.
Tracey and Keri will stay in China until the end of the month, where Keri will receive several more stem-cell treatments.