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Success! Monica from Tanzania raised $940 for surgery to correct her gait.

Monica
100%
  • $940 raised, $0 to go
$940
raised
$0
to go
Fully funded
Monica's treatment was fully funded on February 3, 2016.

Photo of Monica post-operation

February 23, 2016

Monica received successful surgery to correct her gait.

Monica came into our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF), with right genu valgus, commonly called ‘knock-knees.’

AMHF shared the update that Monica’s “corrective surgery was done successfully,” and she is doing well. “She has a long leg cast while the wound heals and later on she will need some walking exercises,” AMHF added. “After complete recovery, Monica will be able to walk without knocking her knees and the risk of developing early osteoarthritis will decrease.”

Monica shares: “I give thanks for all the support that I have received both financially and medically. I am not in pain and I hope the pain will not come back. I look forward to being able to walk properly and have the ability to go back to school and do other things with ease.”

Monica came into our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF), with right genu valgus, commonly called 'knock-knees.' ...

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January 21, 2016

Monica is a 17-year-old girl with dreams of starting her own business. “When I get better I would like to join a tailoring class and later on start my own tailoring business,” she told the staff at our partner hospital in Tanzania.

Currently, Monica is struggling to complete her education in Tanzania due to genu valgus, a condition also known as “knock knees.” This means Monica’s knees bend inwards and touch when she is standing straight, and she “is unable to walk without knocking her knees,” shares our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF). “She often feels pain in her right knee and when the pain is severe, Monica has to use crutches to move from one point to another.”

Monica has been dealing with this condition since she was in primary school. AMHF says, “The condition affected her ability to walk the long distance to school, and when the pain in her knee was severe she had to miss school.” She also had to stop participating in sports that she used to enjoy, like netball and her school’s marathon team.

Monica’s parents earn income for their family of five by farming and running a small kiosk selling drinks and snacks. However, “Their income is not sufficient to cover the cost of their daily expenses as well as the operation which Monica needs,” reports AMHF. “If not treated, Monica will continue to be in pain and her gait will never improve.”

Fortunately, for $940 Monica can receive the surgery, cast, and physical therapy necessary to heal her legs. After her operation, “Monica will be able to walk without knocking her knees,” and will thus have an “Improved gait and ability to efficiently perform various activities,” AMHF adds.

Monica is a 17-year-old girl with dreams of starting her own business. “When I get better I would like to join a tailoring class and later o...

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Monica's Timeline

  • January 21, 2016
    PROFILE SUBMITTED

    Monica was submitted by Esupat Kimerei, Rehab Surgery Project Assistant Coordinator at African Mission Healthcare.

  • January 22, 2016
    TREATMENT OCCURRED

    Monica received treatment at Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre (ALMC) in Tanzania. 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.

  • February 1, 2016
    PROFILE PUBLISHED

    Monica's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • February 3, 2016
    FULLY FUNDED

    Monica's treatment was fully funded.

  • February 23, 2016
    TREATMENT UPDATE

    Monica's treatment was successful. Read the update.

Funded by 27 donors

Funded by 27 donors

Treatment
Fluorosis - Genu Valgus / Varus
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

Patients with genu valgum (or "knock-knees") have knees that bend inward and cause an abnormal walking gait. Patients with genu varum (or bowleggedness) have knees that bend outward and cause knee or hip pain and reduced range of motion in the hips.

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

The patient's mobility is hindered, which can prevent the patient from making a living through physical labor. The patient may also develop arthritis later in life.

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

In the United States, supplemental fluoride is added to the water to improve dental health. However, in areas of northern Tanzania, there is too much naturally-occurring fluoride in the water, which causes bone curvature.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

After surgery, the patient will stay in the hospital for 4-5 days. During this time, the surgical wound will be monitored for swelling and infection. The patient will complete physiotherapy to help him or her walk or move the limbs. A series of X-rays will be performed over several months to monitor the healing process.

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

The bones and joints will be aligned, and long-term disability will be prevented.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

This procedure is not risky, but it is time-consuming. The rehabilitation process can take several months.

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

Care is not easily accessible. Most patients live in remote, rural areas and are identified through mobile outreach. The pediatric surgical program at Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre was started to meet the large burden of pediatric disability in the region.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

There are no alternatives. Although some cases can heal on their own, the patients submitted to Watsi require dedicated treatment.

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.