Due is a 26-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his family in Hlaingbwe Township, Karen State. Due is a farmer while his wife looks after their four-month-old son. In 2018, Due Bay noticed a lump the size of the tip of his thumb on his right breast. He did not seek treatment until the lump slowly increased in size. He then went to a hospital in Hpa-An in early January 2019. At the hospital, he received an x-ray and was told that he would need surgery to remove the mass. Because he had no money to pay for the surgery, he just went home. Currently, the lump on Due’s breast is itchy. Sometimes, he feels like the muscle in his right chest as well as in his armpit are tight. He is very worried about his condition and now he cannot work or carry heavy things. If he tries to carry anything heavy, he feels uncomfortable because of the tightness in his chest and armpit. Doctors want Due to undergo a CT scan, a procedure in which x-ray images taken from several angles are combined to produce cross-sectional images of the body. This scan will hopefully help doctors diagnose his condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $414 to cover the cost of Due's CT scan and care, scheduled for September 12. He said, “I miss my son already and cannot wait to see him. I hope that I can receive surgery as soon as possible so that I can return home to see my son and my family.”
U Kaung is a 52-year-old man from Thailand. He is originally from Mon State, Burma. In his free time, U Kaung likes to forage for vegetables and cut firewood. On the 6th of September 2019, U Kaung went to visit his friend on his bicycle. The road was slippery, and his bike slid, causing him to fall off his bike and break his lower left leg. Currently, U Kaung suffers from a sharp pain in his left leg, which is also swollen. Even though he is taking painkillers, the pain is not alleviated. He cannot walk or place any weight onto his left leg. Presently, he has to use a wheelchair whenever he needs to use the toilet. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, U Kaung will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for September 17 and will cost $1,500. This procedure will help him walk again and relieve him on the pain. "When I recover fully, I will continue to stay at home and do all the housework," said U Kaung.
Zin is a 37-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her husband, son and two daughters in Myawaddy, Karen State. Her 17-year-old son and 13-year-old daughter go to school while her youngest daughter stays home as she is still very young. To make a living, Zin used to make different Burmese snacks and sell them at the nearby villages. But she recently stopped working due to her health condition. Sometimes, her husband works as a day labourer but Zin said she does not know how much he earns from that. Six months ago, Zin started to experience stomach-ache so she went to a clinic. The doctor there did not do any investigations, instead, just prescribed her oral medication. Although Zin felt better with the medications she received at the clinic, her symptom returned after two months and she went back to see the same doctor. The doctor again prescribed her medications, but they only relieved her symptoms for a short time. In early September, Zin felt like her stomach-ache has worsened. She had it more often and the medications that she received at the clinic did not help her anymore. On 12 September 2019, Zin had a severe stomach-ache and for the last time, she returned to see the same doctor. On this visit, the doctor performed an ultrasound and said that there are stones in her common bile duct (CBD), a duct that carries bile from the gallbladder and liver into the duodenum (upper part of the small intestine). Zin has been advised to undergo a biliary obstruction repair, a procedure to repair the blockage of the bile ducts, which carry bile from the liver to the gallbladder. If left untreated, Zin's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. After seeking treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), Zin is scheduled to undergo her biliary obstruction repair on October 03. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Zin's procedure and care. Zin said, “I cannot do anything now. I want to get well soon and start working again. If not, my family will not have enough food”.
Mee is a 53-years-old woman who lives with her husband and two daughters who are studying in grade nine and six at a local high school. Mee’s husband is a carpenter and she is a homemaker. Their income is not enough to cover their expenses. About ten years ago, Mee had joint pain and swollen knees. She went to Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) where she received blood test and vital signs. The results showed Mee has hypertension as well as arthritis. She also found out that she has a goiter related problem. She received one month worth of medication for all three conditions. Since then, Mee went back to MTC every month for follow-up appointment and to received medication. After three years of taking medication, Mee was told that she does not need to take medication for goiter anymore. Up until now, Mee has been going back to the same clinic for regular medication for her goiter. Meanwhile, Mee feels like her goiter has grown bigger. One day, she happened to meet a health worker in her village who told her to go and seek treatment at MTC. So Mee, along with her friend, went to MTC. From there, she was told to go to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation. Mee then went to MSH the following day and she received blood tests and an ultrasound. With the results, the doctor confirmed Mee has a goiter. He said Mee needs to undergo surgery because oral medication or injection would not decrease the size of her goiter. Currently, Mee cannot sleep well but she can eat well. Sometimes, when she carries heavy things, she feels pain in her neck.
Mai is a 23-year-old woman from Burma. Lway lives with her parents and two sisters in Northern Shan State. Since she was three years old, Mai has suffered from an enlarged thyroid but her parents were able afford to take her to a clinic only when Mai was in grade seven. By then, the lump on Mai's throat has become noticeable. At the clinic, the doctor examined her neck and prescribed her medication. After a month, although Mai felt like her neck was still in the same size as before, the doctor told her that her goiter had been cured. Three years later, Mai's neck started to grow bigger. Having no money in hand, her parents did not take her any clinics although there was a tightness in her throat and it was uncomfortable for Mai to move her neck to the side. In 2018, Mai was selected to attend a training in Mae Sot. After her training, she was put in for an internship at Mae Tao Clinc (MTC). Through an advice from one of her trainers, Mai went to Mae Sot Hospital, where the doctor examined her and prescribe her medications. After three months of taking the medications, the doctor finally told her that she needed a surgery. Mai looks forward to receiving surgery soon. She plans to go back to her native town and work as an assistant health worker, after she has completed her treatment. Mai said, “When I told my parents that BCMF would provide support for my surgery, they’re very happy. They have been worried for me for a long time already. I would like to say a big thank you to BCMF for supporting my surgery. I’m very excited to be freed from this condition. I have suffered from this goiter for a long time!”
Paw is a 62-year-old widow from Thailand. She lives with her older brother in Thaw Lae Hta Village, Mae Sariang Town, Mae Hong Son Province. Paw has works as a homemaker taking care of her brother who cannot work due to congenital mental and physical disabilities. Paw has a younger sister in the same town who supports her financially and is her main source of income. Since 2014, Paw has been experiencing some abnormal pain in her right lower abdomen. She has been diagnosed with a myoma. She has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Paw's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Paw is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on November 19th. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, Paw will no longer abdominal pain and she will be able to take care of her brother. Paw said, "Since 2019, I have been experiencing increased levels of pain in my right lower abdomen, increased back pain, and difficulty sleeping. Riding a motorbike aggravates the pain even more. I also experience dysuria and sometimes it takes me longer to use the bathroom. My appetite is good, but I cannot eat as much as I want because I experiences abdominal tightness, difficulty breathing, and fullness in my stomach when I eat too much."
Nan is a 22-year-old woman from Burma. She works as a medic at a clinic near her village. In her free time, she enjoys reading health-related books to gain more knowledge on the work she does. In 2014, while she was attending the medic training at Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), she had a fever which was followed by pain in her back and her right abdomen. Although she had ultrasound done at the clinic, the result showed normal. She was just treated for urinary tract infection, and she felt better after five days. In 2016, she again experienced pain in her abdomen but this time was on the left side. She went to a clinic in Taunggyi, Burma, where she again had an ultrasound imaging test. The result this time revealed a stone in her left ureter. The doctor told her to undergo surgery to remove the stone but because she could not afford the surgical cost 800,000 kyat (approx. 800 USD), she just asked for medication. Since then she had a few episode of severe abdominal pain, and she went to different hospitals in Burma to seek treatment but the doctors kept telling her that she needed surgery. One day in 2019, Nan ran into a friend who also had the same kind of health condition as hers. Her friend told her about the assistance she received at Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) and advised her to ask for help there. Nan then went to MTC, a partner organisation of BCMF. After confirming Nan's diagnosis, MTC referred her to BCMF. Nan still is experiencing back pain at the moment. She worries that her pain will increase when she has to travel. She has pain at her back and at suprapubic area, especially when she sits for a longer period of time and/or when she drinks insufficiently. Although Nan wants to continue learning and attending more training on medical and health, her health problem has limited her ability to finish her trainings. Nan said, “After I recovery from this condition, I will save money so that I can open a small shop, for my parents, to sell dry foods."
U Chit is a 55-year-old man from Myawaddy Township, Karen State, Burma. He divorced his wife seven years ago and has two daughters and three sons. His youngest daughter lives with his ex-wife in Yangon and their other children live in Myawaddy Township. In March 2019, he entered into monkhood. Now, he receives alms from laypeople and from his children. In February 2019, U Chit began to experience back pain and a burning sensation when urinating. To treat his symptoms, he bought medication from a nearby pharmacy. However, after taking the medicine, he did not feel any better. He later went to a local clinic where he received more medication for his symptoms. They suggested that he go to Myawadday Hospital to receive an ultrasound scan. However, he did not go to the hospital because he did not think he would be able to pay for the cost of the scan. Instead, he continued taking the medicine that the doctor had prescribed. Unfortunately, his pain when urinating did not get better. Finally, U Chit decided to visit Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), where he got his hernia treated four years ago, to seek treatment. U Chit arrived at MTC on April 24th, 2019, where an ultrasound scan revealed that he had a bladder stone. The next day, he was sent to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) where he received an injection and oral medication. On May 16th, 2019, he received an Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP) test for further investigation. After the IVP test, the doctor told him that he requires surgery and is scheduled for 20th November 2019. Currently, U Chit experiences back pain and he continues to feel a burning sensation when urinating. Aside from his concerns about his condition, he is worried about financial problems because he is a monk and does not have a regular income. U Chit likes reading Buddhist texts and newspapers in his free time. He said, “I want to cure my condition as soon as possible and I would like to focus on religious activities. After I am cured, I also would like to help find treatment for my daughter who has suffered from a stroke.”
Hnin is a mother of two from Burma. She lives with her husband and two sons, and she is always busy with housework. Since a few months after surgery to remove the cyst in her uterus in 2017, Hnin has been experiencing lower abdominal pain and abnormal bleeding. She has been diagnosed with Myoma. She has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Hnin's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Hnin is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy and our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she will no longer experience pain or bleeding. Moreover, the surgery will stop the mass from reappearing later. Hnin said, “I want to continue to work purchasing clothes and other goods from Mae Sot and selling them in Yangon to earn an income for my family. Because of my condition, I am not able to work for two years now.”
Htwe is a 6-month-old baby boy from Burma. He lives with his parents, two older sisters, and other extended family members. When Htwe was born, he had low glucose level and was admitted at the hospital for 18 days. He was doing fine until a few weeks ago when he started to have infrequent seizures. Doctors want Htwe to undergo a CT scan, a procedure in which x-ray images taken from several angles are combined to produce cross-sectional images of the body. This scan will hopefully help doctors diagnose his condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $414 to cover the cost of Htwe's CT scan and care. Htwe's mother said, "As a mother, I’m very sad for my son. I look at him with pity. I’m worried he won’t grow up to become a normal kid like others his age."
Khin is 38-year-old woman in Thailand. Originally from Mon State, Burma, Khin went to one of the refugee camps in Thailand to visit her cousins and search for job opportunities four years ago. However, Khin met her husband there and ended up moving in with her parents-in-law, four brothers-in-law and a nephew in the camp. Since 2016, Khin has been experiencing abnormal bleeding, pain in her back and suprapubic area which increases whenever she walks long distances. She has been diagnosed with uterine myoma. She has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Khin's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Khin is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy with our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, and is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she will no longer experience pain or discomfort and will be able to return to work full-time.
Naw Khu is a 18-month-old baby girl from Burma who lives with her parents and grandparents. Her mother wants her to become a medic when she grows older so that she could help people in her village. About a month ago, Naw Khu started to have difficulty passing urine. Her parents took her to a hospital where she had the catheter inserted. Since then she has been living with the catheter on because whenever the catheter was removed she had difficulty. The family arrived at our partner hospital last week and Naw Khu received an ultrasound. The result revealed mass-like object which is pressing onto her bladder. Doctors now want Naw Khu to undergo a CT scan, a procedure in which x-ray images taken from several angles are combined to produce cross-sectional images of the body. This scan will hopefully help doctors diagnose her condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $414 to cover the cost of Naw Khu's CT scan and care, scheduled for December 9th. Naw Khu’s father said, “We do not have money and could not speak Burmese well, so it was very difficult for us to go Yangon. We were very sad because we don't have any money. I just cried. I want her to be healthy and I also want her to grow up healthy like other children.”