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Synet is a farmer from Malawi who needs $733 to fund prostate surgery.

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February 14, 2017

Synet is an 86-year-old man from the village of Mawadenga in Malawi. Synet lives with his wife, and together they have six children and twenty grandchildren. Synet and his family have a small farm. When not busy with his farm, Synet likes to spend time with his grandchildren.

For the past year, Synet has been having difficulty urinating. This problem has caused him weakness and pain and has prevented him from working. He was diagnosed with an enlarged prostate.

On February 15, Synet will undergo prostate surgery. Our medical partner, World Altering Medicine, is requesting $733 to fund his care. Synet and his family were very happy to learn about Watsi.

Synet says, “I am very thankful to Watsi.”

Synet is an 86-year-old man from the village of Mawadenga in Malawi. Synet lives with his wife, and together they have six children and twen...

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Synet's Timeline

  • February 14, 2017

    Synet was submitted by Alison Corbit, Project Coordinator at World Altering Medicine, our medical partner in Malawi.

  • February 15, 2017

    Synet received treatment at Nkhoma Hospital.

  • February 21, 2017

    Synet's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • March 07, 2017

    Awaiting Synet's treatment update from World Altering Medicine.


    Synet is currently raising funds for his treatment.

Funded by 23 donors

Funded by 23 donors

Colon / Prostate Resection
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $733 for Synet'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 primary condition treated with this surgery is benign overgrowth of the prostate, called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Patients generally present with urinary symptoms, including difficulty or inability to pass urine, urination frequency, passing very small amounts of urine, or passing urine very slowly. Some patients experience pain when trying to pass urine.

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

Most Malawians live in rural areas, and a large percentage of them work as farmers. This is also true of our medical partner's patient population. When men are experiencing symptoms related to BPH, they often have a hard time working on their farms. They are therefore unable to support themselves and their families. Before receiving surgery, many men will have a catheter placed, which can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. Additionally, using a catheter for a prolonged period of time can lead to infection or trauma to the area.

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

Although experiencing symptoms associated with BPH is not commonly viewed as taboo within our medical partner's patient population, it is rarely discussed. Men can feel embarrassment about the condition and the impact it has on their lives. Some men experience psychological effects from the condition.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

The standard treatment is a prostate resection, which is a fairly standard procedure. After the surgery, the patient will use a catheter for 14 days. Once the catheter is removed and the patient can pass urine freely, they can be discharged.

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

If the treatment goes smoothly, it is expected that healthy patients will make a full recovery and not relapse.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

Although there are risks associated with any surgical procedure, the risks associated with a prostate resection are very low. However, as the patient population tends to be of older age, it is common that patients have other underlying conditions, such as high blood pressure. Patients who are candidates for this surgery are screened and monitored carefully. If a patient is found to have another health condition that could jeopardize their health during or after the surgery, that condition is addressed first.

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

In the area of our medical partner's treatment center, there is one central, public hospital. That hospital provides surgical services, but barriers exist. A patient requiring a hernia repair could be on a waitlist for years at the central hospital, or be sent home and told to return a number of times. For this reason, treatment can be very difficult to obtain at the public hospital. In addition to our medical partner's treatment center and the central hospital, there are private clinics that would provide this service, but at a high fee. Our medical partner's treatment center, Nkhoma, is a great option for patients because they are able to receive quality treatment.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

Drugs can be used to relieve symptoms for a short period of time, but ultimately, surgery is the only treatment.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.


Victor is a 23-month-old baby from Guatemala's rural highlands. He is a friendly child who loves to eat his favorite foods, which are watermelon and rice. Victor’s father works as a day laborer, and his mother takes care of the family’s household needs. Victor’s parents do all they can to provide all that their son needs, but they still do not have the resources to pay for Victor’s malnutrition treatment. Although he is 23 months old, Victor is only the size of a healthy eight-month-old. He has malnutrition, a dangerous condition that results from consuming too little protein, calories, and nutrients. In the short term, malnutrition means Victor has little energy to grow and that his immune system is weak. He may also face malnutrition’s long-term consequences, such as increased risk of chronic diseases, low IQ, and higher likelihood of dropping out of school. While malnutrition can have devastating effects, it is also very treatable. Growth monitoring, micronutrients and food supplementation will help Victor recover. He will gain weight and grow taller to catch up with other children his age, and his immune system will grow stronger with the increased caloric intake. Community health workers will teach his mother about creating a nutrient-rich diet with limited resources. Our medical partner, Wuqu' Kawoq, is requiring $492 to fund Victor's malnutrition treatment, which is scheduled to begin on April 27. Victor’s mother says, “I am grateful to be a part of the program. For us, it is a great help since we are of scarce resources and cannot give Victor all that he needs. We wish for our son to one day grow up to become a professional.”

6% funded

$462to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.