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Success! Sim from Cambodia raised $709 to fund surgery to repair nerves controlling his right arm.

  • $709 raised, $0 to go
to go
Fully funded
Sim's treatment was fully funded on July 9, 2022.

Photo of Sim post-operation

July 18, 2022

Sim underwent complex surgery to repair nerves so he can use his right arm.

Sim had complex surgery with our medical partner Children’s Surgical Centre, and after a week at the hospital, he was able to make the long journey home. This surgery is life-saving for Sim; he hopes to regain the use of his right shoulder and hand so that he can return to farming. He worked closely with the physiotherapy team to regain strength, as it may be many months until he sees a full return to normal function. He is hopeful to have a complete recovery and can support his family. It has been very difficult for his family without his help, and they are happy he can support their family again.

Sim’s wife shared, “After his accident, Sim was depressed that he could not work in the field to support our family or do things for himself. It has been hard on our family; now we have hope again. Thank you for helping to pay for his surgery and to the hospital staff who treated him so well.”

Sim had complex surgery with our medical partner Children's Surgical Centre, and after a week at the hospital, he was able to make the long ...

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May 11, 2022

Sim is a 59-year-old potato farmer. He is married with three sons and four daughters; his wife is also a farmer. All of his children are married and live elsewhere in their province. In his free time, he likes to exercise, play with his grandchildren, and listen to the local and national news on his radio.

A year ago, while spreading insecticide from his tractor, he was overcome by the fumes, passed out and crashed the tractor. His shoulder was paralyzed, and Sim was diagnosed with a brachial plexus injury on his right shoulder side. The brachial plexus is a nerve network that transmits signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. The injury prevents him from lifting his shoulder, bending his elbow or moving his arm. He is unable to use his arm to work, dress himself, hold his grandchildren or perform most activities of daily living.

Sim traveled to our medical partner’s care center to receive treatment. This is the only center in the whole country where this treatment is available. On May 10, he will undergo a brachial plexus repair surgery. After recovery, Sim hopes that he will regain some use of his arm so he can return to farming and support his living. Our medical partner, Children’s Surgical Centre, is requesting $709 to fund this procedure.

Sim said: “I hope this surgery will work to allow me to use my arm again so I can work. I feel very poorly, and cannot work or help my wife at home.”

Sim is a 59-year-old potato farmer. He is married with three sons and four daughters; his wife is also a farmer. All of his children are ma...

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Sim's Timeline

  • May 10, 2022

    Sim received treatment at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre in Cambodia. 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, 2022

    Sim was submitted by Ellen Interlandi, Stakeholder Relations at Children's Surgical Centre.

  • May 13, 2022

    Sim's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • July 9, 2022

    Sim's treatment was fully funded.

  • July 18, 2022

    Sim's treatment was successful. Read the update.

Funded by 8 donors

Funded by 8 donors

Brachial Plexus Injury Surgery
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $709 for Sim'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?

Symptoms of brachial plexus injury (BPI) vary on the severity and location of the injury, but include muscle weakness, loss of sensation, pain, and paralysis. BPI can cause neuropathic pain with damage to the spinal cord and can be long-lasting, with effects such as burning numbness.

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

The impact of a brachial plexus injury can range in severity; some patients may experience weakness or great pain, others may be paralyzed in their shoulder and upper arm. This can make day-to-day tasks difficult and impair quality of life.

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

Motorcycle collisions are the most common cause of brachial plexus injury, and are, unfortunately, an exceedingly common occurrence in Cambodia.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

Treatment for brachial plexus injury can involve nerve repair, nerve grafting, nerve transfer, or tendon and muscle transfers depending on the location and type of injury, and the amount of time since the injury occurred. A nerve repair involves reattaching a severed nerve; nerve graft is a procedure that takes a healthy nerve from another part of the body and transplants it to the injured nerve to guide regrowth; a nerve transfer is a procedure that cuts a donor nerve and connects it to the injured nerve when there is no functioning nerve stump to attach a graft. Nerve regeneration occurs approximately at a rate of 1 mm/day, and so recovery from a brachial plexus injury can take months for small improvements. Physical therapy during this time is important to prevent stiffness, contractures, or atrophy and increase the chances of regaining good movement in the affected limb.

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

While BPI surgery may not restore full movement to a patient, it can greatly increase the patient’s ability to use the affected limb and reduce the pain of the injury.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

BPI surgery is complicated and risks include infection as well as failure to restore movement, which would require further surgery.

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

Surgery to treat brachial plexus injury can be very complex and not widely performed. Surgical treatment in Cambodia can be expensive and hard to access. Patients will travel for hours by car, motocycle, and bus to receive free surgery at CSC.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

Brachial plexus injury can have a range of severity; some patients may be able to be treated by splinting or physical therapy, but serious cases require surgical intervention. These types of injuries do not have alternatives to improving movement and functionality.

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.