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Emily from Malawi raised $1,244 to fund surgery to finally heal her bowel obstruction condition.

  • $1,244 raised, $0 to go
to go
Fully funded
Emily's treatment was fully funded on November 28, 2021.

Photo of Emily post-operation

December 7, 2021

Emily underwent surgery.

We received an update from our medical partner on Emily’s care and condition that we want to share with you. Emily went to the operating theatre for a laparotomy. The surgeon discovered a large obstructive mass which prevented them from a full reversal of her ileostomy. The surgeon advised that due to the position of the mass, a removal could lead to heavy bleeding that would risk Emily’s life. Emily was still grateful that she had such an opportunity in life where people really wanted to help her and change her story. She was also grateful that the ileostomy is now well shaped and it will be more easier for her than it was before.

“I am grateful I had this opportunity, I still feel good to know that someone was willing to help me change my life and even paid for it,” shared Emily.

We received an update from our medical partner on Emily's care and condition that we want to share with you. Emily went to the operating the...

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October 22, 2021

Emily is a kind 26-year-old woman who recently got engaged to her childhood friend. She is the fourth born in a family of 7 and lives with both of her parents.

One day in 2008, Emily started to experience severe abdominal pains. The pains kept increasing and she could not pass stool. On the third day, her parents rushed her the hospital where a diagnosis of bowel obstruction was made. She was taken to the operating room and had an ileostomy done as a temporary treatment for the bowel obstruction. An ileostomy is an opening in the abdominal wall that is made during surgery, part of the small intestines are diverted through an opening in the abdomen called a stoma. A special bag is placed over the stoma to collect fecal matter that are unable to pass through the colon out of the body. An ileostomy is reversible since it is only made to provide a temporary passage for the release of stools out of the body while allowing healing of the operated part of the intestines/ bowels.

Emily was scheduled for ileostomy reversal in July 2008 and the parents took her back to the hospital where she was admitted. She was later discharged home and the surgery rescheduled since the there were many patients in the waiting list. She has since had more than 7 admissions for the procedure but each time she is discharged and the surgery rescheduled. They kept going to the hospital and in 2011 they gave up since they were not getting help and had already spent a lot on transport and meals. Emily eventually dropped out of school due to discrimination and the stigma associated with the condition. She now uses cheap thin plastic papers as stoma bags as the family cannot afford to buy the all the bags due to financial constraints. She has grown to live with this condition.

Despite all that has been in her way, Emily is still very hard working and earns a living from washing clothes at people’s homes. This enables her to buy the plastic bags for the stoma. Often, she runs out of money to buy the bags and is forced to stay indoors. Recently, one of their neighbors had a thyroidectomy done at Partners in Hope Hospital under a special program and urged her parents to bring her for assessment. The surgeon reviewed her and indicated that the condition can still be corrected through laparotomy where an ileostomy reversal will be done. This surgery will greatly improve Emily’s life, restore her dignity as a human being and remove the emotional pain and torture that Emily has lived with the past 13 years. Her parents are seeking financial support to help their daughter undergo the surgery.

“I remember that when I was young, I used to use the bathroom normally in the pit latrine. I pray that one day I will be able to use the toilet again. I hope that when I get married I will be like all other women and will not have to embarrass my husband with this condition,” shared Emily with a shy smile on her face.

Emily is a kind 26-year-old woman who recently got engaged to her childhood friend. She is the fourth born in a family of 7 and lives with b...

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Emily's Timeline

  • October 22, 2021

    Emily was submitted by Edward Mugane, Impact Assessment Coordinator at African Mission Healthcare.

  • October 25, 2021

    Emily was scheduled to receive treatment at Partners in Hope Medical Center in Malawi. Medical partners often provide care to patients accepted by Watsi before those patients are fully funded, operating under the guarantee that the cost of care will be paid for by donors.

  • October 26, 2021

    Emily's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • November 28, 2021

    Emily's treatment was fully funded.

  • December 7, 2021

    Emily's treatment was started but not completed. Read the update.

Funded by 22 donors

Funded by 22 donors

  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $1,244 for Emily's treatment
Hospital Fees
Medical Staff
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

​What kinds of symptoms do patients experience before receiving treatment?

The symptoms vary depending on the condition being treated. Most curative laparotomies are treatment for tumors or infections. Patients will have pain, weight loss, fever, and abdominal fullness. A curative laparotomy could address a range of abdominal conditions, such as an ovarian tumor, stomach cancer, liver cancer, cholecystitis, abscess, and others.

​What is the impact on patients’ lives of living with these conditions?

It depends on the nature of the condition, but most curative laparotomies are done for tumors or infections. Patients will have pain, weight loss, fever, and abdominal fullness.

What cultural or regional factors affect the treatment of these conditions?

Dependent on the exact condition. Stomach ulcers, ovarian tumors, and cancer are increasingly becoming common and detected across Africa.

  • Process
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Risks and side-effects
  • Accessibility
  • Alternatives

What does the treatment process look like?

The surgery lasts around three hours with the patient being discharged home after three days. They are continuously monitored in the hospital ward after surgery to ensure a healthy recovery.

What is the impact of this treatment on the patient’s life?

The procedure is done with the intent of removing the pathology and curing the condition.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

Medium surgical risk, overall, the risk of surgery is less than the risk of doing nothing. If the condition is cancer and caught early enough, it is treatable. If the condition is benign, such as cholecystitis, then the laparotomy is curative.

How accessible is treatment in the area? What is the typical journey like for a patient to receive care?

There are few quality hospitals with adequate resources and expertise to treat most of the conditions that could be diagnosed by a laparotomy.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

For most abdominal tumors there is no alternative to removing them.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.


Taw is a 16-year-old boy who lives with his family in a village in Tak Province, Thailand. Everyone in his family works as a farmer and he's a student in the eighth grade. In September 2021, there was an outbreak of COVID-19 cases around his area and his school was closed. Since then, he helps out his family on the farm. Occasionally, he also helps out in their village to earn pocket money. On November 21st, Taw was riding a motorbike on a small dirt road to his family's fields. He was driving quickly, when suddenly another motorbike appeared driving straight towards him. He tried to move to the side of the road to let the other driver pass, but his motorbike slipped and his left ankle hit a stone beside the road, breaking his ankle in the process. At first he was in a lot of pain, but now the pain has lessened thanks to medication he is taking. However, the area around his left ankle hurts if he tries to move his left foot. Currently, Taw cannot put pressure on his left ankle and has to use crutches to do anything. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Taw will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for November 26th and will cost $1,500. After surgery, Taw will be able to walk again and he will no longer be in pain. Taw said, "I want to get better. My teacher told me that my school will reopen soon. Thank you so much to the donors and the organization who are willing to help me. Without your help, my family could never come up with enough money to pay for my treatment."

73% funded

$400to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.