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Success! Saroh from Burma raised $1,500 to fund heart surgery.

  • $1,500 raised, $0 to go
to go
Fully funded
Saroh's treatment was fully funded on September 14, 2021.

Photo of Saroh post-operation

October 4, 2021

Saroh underwent life-saving heart surgery.

Saroh’s surgery was successful and she is recovering well! Before her surgery, Saroh suffered from difficult breathing, itchiness in her palms, tiredness, chest pain and back pain. Her lips, fingers and toes were blue, and she felt too tired to walk long distances. Since her surgery, Saroh no longer feels tired even if she walks longer distances. Her lips, toes and fingers are no longer blue, and she no longer experiences heart palpitations nor difficulty breathing. The itchiness in her palms are gone, and she no longer experiences chest nor back pain.

In the future, Saroh wants to study in school as she has learned how to read and write while staying at our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund’s patient house. In the future, Saroh hopes to become a missionary. She is so happy that she is able to read and write, and that she is now healthy.

Saroh said, “I would like to say thank you very much to donors and everyone who helped me with this treatment. Without your help, I would have never received treatment, and I would still be suffering from chest and back pain. I used to be unwell, and I could not help my family with anything. I believe that I will be able to help them in the near future, as I have recovered. Now, I can even help with cleaning the house, washing plates and cooking but my mother wants me to rest a bit more because she does not want me to do anything yet.”

Her mother said, “I was very happy, and the rest of our family was also happy to hear that she had received successful surgery. I would like to say thank you so much for helping my daughter. I had never heard of an organisation that helps patients by providing free surgery, and I never dreamed that kind donors would support the cost of my daughter’s surgery. This treatment has brought a lot of happiness to my family. Saroh looks so different and happy now. I used to think a lot about where I could bring her to treat her and about how we would pay for it because we have no money. We spent three years waiting in the Refugee Camp for her to get treatment, but when that did not happen, we lost hope. Now we cannot express how happy we are, and we cannot thank the donors enough for make her treatment possible.”

Saroh's surgery was successful and she is recovering well! Before her surgery, Saroh suffered from difficult breathing, itchiness in her pal...

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August 23, 2021

Saroh is a 17-year-old girl who lives with her parents, two younger brothers and a younger sister in a village in Burma. Her sister and brothers attend school while Saroh has never gone to school due to her health. Saroh’s parents are farmers and they grow rice.

Saroh was around five or six months old, when her mother noticed that when Saroh tried to roll over, her lips, toes and fingers would turn blue. Saroh’s mother was unable to take Saroh to a clinic or hospital because they did not have enough money to do so.

When Saroh was 5 years old she would often become tired when playing with her friends. Her lips, toes and fingers were also still blue. On a recommendation from a family friend, Saroh’s mother brought Saroh to a free clinic where she was referred to a hospital for further investigation. Following diagnostics exams, Saroh’s mother was told that Saroh was born with a heart condition. In order to get treatment Saroh would have to be transferred to a hospital that was very far. Without enough information or money to travel and pay for treatments, Saroh and her mother traveled back to their village. Saroh was then treated with traditional medicine which according to Saroh’s mother seemed to stabilize her condition.

In the middle of 2019, Saroh started to experience back pain. She also felt more tired and had difficulty breathing. Her mother did not know what to do as they had no money to bring her to a hospital or a clinic. Saroh’s mother asked their friends if they knew of a way that Saroh could receive treatment. In May 2020, Saroh’s uncle told his friend about Saroh’s condition. That friend happened to be a former staff member of our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) and told Saroh’s uncle about how BCMF could help. BCMF agreed to help Saroh access the treatment she needs, and is requesting $1500 to fund her cardiac surgery.

Now staying at the patient house in Chiang Mai, Saroh is learning how to read and write with the help of BCMF staff who teaches here during her free time while waiting for her treatment. Saroh said, “If I feel better, I want to help my mother with household chores. In the future, I think I want to go to Bible school and become a missionary. I am very thankful to all the donors who are willing to help pay for the cost of my treatment.”

Saroh is a 17-year-old girl who lives with her parents, two younger brothers and a younger sister in a village in Burma. Her sister and brot...

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Saroh's Timeline

  • August 23, 2021

    Saroh was submitted by Bue Wah Say, Project Officer at Burma Children Medical Fund.

  • August 24, 2021

    Saroh received treatment at Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital in Thailand. 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.

  • August 25, 2021

    Saroh's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • September 14, 2021

    Saroh's treatment was fully funded.

  • October 4, 2021

    Saroh's treatment was successful. Read the update.

Funded by 31 donors

TOF Total Correction
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $7,825 for Saroh's treatment
Subsidies fund $6,325 and Watsi raises the remaining $1,500
Hospital Fees
Medical Staff
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

Patients may experience excessive sweating, extreme tiredness and fatigue, irregular heartbeat, rapid breathing or shortness of breath, chest pain, cyanosis (a blue tinge to the skin), clubbed fingernails, lightheadedness, or loss of consciousness.

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

Patients cannot do labor work—even doing household chores may tire them. Adults will be unable to care for their families, and children will be unable to play or attend school. As the condition progresses, patients may become unable to eat.

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

Burma has a long queue of congenital cardiac patients who need surgery. With only four fully trained cardiac surgeons in Burma, children with congenital heart defects may have extreme difficulty accessing treatment.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

Doctors may combine catheter and surgical procedures to repair complex congenital heart defects. If the defect cannot be fixed with a catheter, the patient will undergo an open heart surgery to close holes in the heart.

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

This surgery saves lives. Children will return to school, and adults will return to working and caring for their families.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

Potential side effects include bleeding, infection, fever, swelling, inflammation, arrhythmias, damage to surrounding organs, stroke, and death. Heart surgery is more likely to be life-threatening for patients who are very sick before the surgery.

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

Many of our medical partner's patients live in remote areas. They cannot afford or access treatment because it is only available in large cities.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

There are no alternatives. If left untreated, this heart condition will become life-threatening for patients.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.