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Success! Chetra from Cambodia raised $450 to fund back surgery.

  • $450 raised, $0 to go
to go
Fully funded
Chetra's treatment was fully funded on April 26, 2017.

Photo of Chetra post-operation

March 1, 2017

Chetra underwent successful back surgery.

Chetra’s treatment went well. Surgeons at CSC fixated titanium screws and a rod to correct her curved spine. Following her procedure, she had one week of physiotherapy at CSC before going home. Her wound has healed, and she does not experience pain. Chetra feels more comfortable than before.

Chetra’s mother says, “I am happy to see my daughter do things by herself now. Thanks to all of the staff for the help.”

Chetra's treatment went well. Surgeons at CSC fixated titanium screws and a rod to correct her curved spine. Following her procedure, she ha...

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January 17, 2017

Chetra is a bright 24-year-old bank teller from Cambodia. She is one of six siblings. She likes to read magazines and listen to pop songs in her free time. At a young age, Chetra’s spine began to curve. She was diagnosed with a condition called scoliosis.

Scoliosis is a lateral curvature of the spine that causes it to bow out to the side instead of taking a natural vertical shape. The curvature has limited her ability to bend and has continued to cause pain well into her adult years. If left untreated, her spine may continue to to bend and even twist. This misalignment could cause pain in her back and pressure on her ribs.

At her most recent hospital visit, Chetra’s physicians recommended a joint arthrodesis procedure to correct her scoliosis. Surgeons will attach hardware to the curved part of Chetra’s backbone to promote straightening and stabilizing of her spine. Our medical partner, Children’s Surgical Centre, is requesting $450 to fund Chetra’s back surgery, scheduled for January 18.

Chetra’s back surgery will help alleviate the pain she is experiencing and greatly improve her quality life.

Chetra is a bright 24-year-old bank teller from Cambodia. She is one of six siblings. She likes to read magazines and listen to pop songs in...

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Chetra's Timeline

  • January 17, 2017

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

  • January 18, 2017

    Chetra 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.

  • January 24, 2017

    Chetra's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • March 01, 2017

    Chetra's treatment was successful. Read the update.

  • April 26, 2017

    Chetra's treatment was fully funded.

Funded by 12 donors

Funded by 12 donors

Joint Arthrodesis
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $450 for Chetra'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?

Arthrodesis is the abolition and fusion of a joint via surgical means. For example, the knee joint is obliterated to join the femur to the tibia. This is done to relieve intractable pain that cannot be managed by pain medication, splints, or other treatments. The typical causes of such pain are fractures, severe sprains, infections, and arthritis. Arthrodesis is most commonly performed on joints in the spine, hand, ankle, and foot. This procedure can also be performed on the shoulder, knee, or wrist.

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

Any painful joint can impair normal function. Moving the legs, arms, or spine may be acutely painful and disabling.

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

Patients in Cambodia often neglect pain and other symptoms far longer than patients in America, so their cases become more complex.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

There are a number of joint arthrodesis surgeries that a patient might undergo. The patient will be examined, and doctors will create a treatment plan for the affected joint.

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

The patient will be rendered pain-free. Of course, the patient will experience limited function in this joint.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

Surgery performed on the limbs is not risky. However, spinal fusion procedures can entail a lot of blood loss and are inherently more risky.

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

Joint arthrodesis is not widely available in Cambodia, as there are only a handful of doctors in the country that perform fusions. Usually, people experience months or years of pain before the joint fuses itself or they manage to find a surgeon to treat it appropriately.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

The alternatives to surgery are bracing or splinting, but these are temporary measures.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.


She lives with her parents in Karen State, Burma. She now works at Kyaw Hta Rural Clinic, 45 minutes away by motorbike from her village and earns 70,000 Kyat (approx. 70 USD) per month. Her parents are farmers and their total income is 100,000 kyat (approx. 100 USD) per month. Their income is just enough for their daily needs. Around eight years ago, Cherry developed pain in the right side of her abdomen. She went to the clinic near her village. At the clinic, the medic thought that she was suffering from normal stomachaches. Since the clinic did not have the necessary equipment to run diagnostic tests, the medic treated her for the pain. She received pain killers and when the pain was worse, a stronger does of pain killers through an injection. In May 2019, she was completing her training with Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), when the pain in her abdomen became worse. She received an ultrasound and painkillers at the clinic, before she was diagnosed with a renal stone in her right kidney. MTC then referred her to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation and treatment. At the hospital, she received an X-ray, ultrasound and a blood test, as well as oral medication for the pain. After checking her results, the doctor confirmed her diagnosis and told her that she needs to receive laser treatment two to three times, to break up the stone in her kidney. She received her first round of laser treatment on 7 August 2019. To pay for that, she had to borrow money from her supervisor and her neighbor. She was scheduled to undergo a second round of treatment on 18 September 2019, but she could no longer afford to pay. Luckily, MTC referred her to Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) for assistance in accessing further treatment. Currently, Cherry still has pain in the right side of her abdomen. She is interested in the field of medicine and enjoys learning new things related to this field in her free time.

71% funded

$425to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.