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Ban is a rice farmer from Cambodia who needs $216 to fund eye surgery for pterygium.

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May 8, 2020

Ban is a 40-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. He and his wife work in the fields together. They have two sons. In his free time, he enjoys watching Khmer dramas and boxing matches on TV.

Five months ago, Ban developed a pterygium in his right eye, causing him irritation, tearing, and blurry vision. Pterygiums are non-cancerous growths of the conjunctiva, a mucous layer that lubricates the eye. The growths occur when the conjunctiva is exposed to excessive sun damage and the cells grow abnormally over the pupil. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, working, and going anywhere outside.

When Ban learned about our medical partner, Children’s Surgical Centre, he traveled for three-and-a-half hours seeking treatment. Ban needs a surgical procedure to remove the abnormal conjunctiva from the cornea surface and replace it with a conjunctival graft to prevent recurrence. The total cost of his procedure is $216. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care for two days. The procedure is scheduled for May 8th.

Ban’s wife said, “My husband works so hard everyday. I hope that he will be able to see everything clearly and he can go back to working in the fields with me again.”

Ban is a 40-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. He and his wife work in the fields together. They have two sons. In his free time, he enjoys...

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Ban's Timeline

  • May 8, 2020

    Ban was submitted by Lindsay Bownik, Stakeholder Relations Officer at Children's Surgical Centre, our medical partner in Cambodia.

  • May 08, 2020

    Ban received treatment at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre. 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.

  • May 11, 2020

    Ban's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • July 02, 2020

    Awaiting Ban's treatment update from Children's Surgical Centre.


    Ban is currently raising funds for his treatment.

Funded by 3 donors

Funded by 3 donors

  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $216 for Ban'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?

A pterygium, a non-cancerous growth of conjunctiva covering the cornea, causes tearing, redness, blurred vision, burning, itchiness, and discomfort.

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

When the growth affects the central visual axis, vision will be decreased. The abnormal growth also causes pain and discomfort. Patients usually complain of irritation, light sensitivity, foreign body sensation, and decreased vision.

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

Pterygium occurrence is much higher among people who live near the equator because of greater exposure to the sun. It is nicknamed "surfer's eye."

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

What does the treatment process look like?

Surgeons scrape the dysplastic conjunctiva from the cornea surface, removing the affected conjunctiva. They place an autologous conjunctival graft to cover the defect and prevent recurrence.

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

Surgery cures the symptoms caused by pterygium. Patients experience improved vision and reduced pain and discomfort.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

Surgical excision of a pterygium is curative. The procedure is very low risk.

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

Most patients live with the eye irritation and decreased vision until it starts to affect their daily life. Then, they seek care.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

Irritation can be temporarily treated with lubricating drops.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.


Kyamatungo is a 74-year-old widow and a mother who shared with us that she had given birth to four children, but lost two of her daughters and she currently only has two sons. One of her sons is a plumber and another one is a primary teacher. She earns a living from her small farm of bananas from which she gets food and has to sell off some Matooke when she is in need of essential basic needs like salt soap and paraffin. At times she grows small gardens of beans and maize to feed her family. Kyamatungo came to the hospital with urine incontinence and persistent abdominal pain which she says started three years ago. She further shared that these and her other symptoms have exposed her to having a poor quality of life due to the discomfort she often feels whenever she is public. If not treated, the presenting symptoms may persist or worsen hence causing lifetime disease-related complications or possibly mortality. Kyamatungo had only ever been to Rugarama health centre IV, where she was examined and diagnosed with cystocele but doctors referred her to Nyakible Hospital for surgical treatment. She was not able to immediately come due to limited finances. At Watsi's Partner Nyakible Hospital, she has been seen by the gynaecologist for specialized examination, who has recommended surgery. Kyamatungo says: “I will thank you, people, and pray to God to bless you when am give a chance to undergo my surgery under your support. I hope my surgery will be successful so that I could be relieved from these pending symptoms.”

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$230to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.