Kar Aung is a one-year-old boy from Burma. One of six siblings, he lives with his mother, father, and older brother on a relative’s farm. His mother hopes that he will become a medic when he grows up.
Hours after Kar Aung was born in September 2015, his mother noticed an abnormal growth on his nose. A few days later, she took him to a private clinic, where the doctors diagnosed Kar Aung with nasofrontal encephalocele. This neural tube defect, resulting from a failure of the neural tube to fully close during fetal development, causes protrusions of the brain through openings in the skull.
Kar Aung and his mother returned to the clinic four times, at great financial cost. Each time, they received medication, but his symptoms never improved. Finally, Kar Aung’s father contacted our medical partner’s care center, Mae Tao Clinic (MTC). In March of 2016, six-month-old Kar Aung and his parents made the long, expensive journey to MTC. Upon examination, Kar Aung was diagnosed with tuberculosis and nasofrontal encephalocele.
“I worried that my son will not be cured, as I have never seen kids like this in my village,” Kar Aung’s mother says. “I will always love him.”
Fortunately, Kar Aung is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on January 13. Our medical partner is requesting $1,500 to cover medications, surgery, transportation, and two weeks of hospital stay. When Kar Aung is fully recovered, he should be pain-free and able to see clearly.