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Lu is a 63-year-old Burmese refugee from Thailand who needs $1,500 to fund cataract surgery.

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January 17, 2023

Lu is a 63-year-old man who lives with his wife and niece in a refugee camp in Thailand. He is unemployed, while his wife is a homemaker, and his niece is a student. Lu enjoys going to the forest to fish in the steams and to forage for vegetables. He shared he also likes to read the Bible and to sing hymns.

Lu developed cataracts in both of his eyes. As a result, his vision is blurry and impaired, which makes it difficult for Lu to lead an independent life.

Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Lu. On January 19th, doctors at Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital will perform a lens replacement procedure, during which they will remove Lu’s natural lenses, and replace them with intraocular lens implants. After recovery, Lu will be able to see clearly again and get back to his day-to-day life. Now, he needs your help to fund this $1,500 procedure.

Lu said: “I feel so annoyed and uncomfortable when I try to look around me, so I will often just close my eyes,” he said. “I want to receive surgery so that my vision can be restored.”

Lu is a 63-year-old man who lives with his wife and niece in a refugee camp in Thailand. He is unemployed, while his wife is a homemaker, a...

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Lu's Timeline

  • January 17, 2023

    Lu was submitted by Bridgitte Agocs at Burma Children Medical Fund.

  • January 19, 2023

    Lu was scheduled to receive 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.

  • January 22, 2023

    Lu's profile was published to start raising funds.


    Lu is currently raising funds for his treatment.

  • TBD

    Awaiting Lu's treatment update from Burma Children Medical Fund.

Funded by 23 donors

Funded by 23 donors

Lens Replacement
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $4,154 for Lu's treatment
Subsidies fund $2,654 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 blurred or dim vision, shadows or blind spots in the field of vision, sensitivity to light and glare, and double vision.

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

Reduced vision can result in social isolation, depression, increased risk of falling and accidents, and ultimately a greater tendency to be disabled. Without surgery, the patient will have no choice but to live with end-stage ocular disease, often resulting in blindness or pain.

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

The healthcare system in Burma does not permit the average citizen to receive proper eye examinations. This lack of attention to ocular health is due to a variety of reasons. However, a low optometrist-to-population ratio and insufficient funds are the leading causes.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

Surgery will only be performed if the pressure in the eye is stable. The time it takes to stabilize the pressure in the eye depends on the severity of damage to the eye.

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

The patient will regain his or her vision, though it may not be perfectly clear. Fortunately, the surgery prevents a complete loss of vision.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

Potential side effects include bleeding, infection, scarring, persistent swelling, wound separation, and the need to undergo additional surgery.

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

Burma has 309 ophthalmologists and 150 eye nurses. Fewer than half of the ophthalmologists perform surgery, and almost two-thirds confine their practice to the cities of Yangon (with a population of about six million) and Mandalay (about three million), where many people have the financial capacity to meet high out-of-pocket healthcare expenses. Aside from these main facilities, there is roughly one ophthalmologist for every 500,000 people, and eye health screening and treatment for children and adults is neither comprehensive nor consistent.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

There are no alternatives. If left untreated, the patient will eventually lose his or her vision completely.

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.