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Gideon from Kenya raised $1,500 to fund cancer-fighting surgery.

Gideon
100%
  • $1,500 raised, $0 to go
$1,500
raised
$0
to go
Fully funded
Gideon's treatment was fully funded on December 31, 2016.
February 1, 2017

Gideon did not receive treatment as expected.

Unfortunately, Gideon decided against undergoing surgery. His family members were unable to convince him to undergo treatment, so they have decided to seek a second opinion at a different hospital.

Unfortunately, Gideon decided against undergoing surgery. His family members were unable to convince him to undergo treatment, so they have ...

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December 5, 2016

Meet Gideon, an ambitious teenager about to begin his final year of high school. Gideon has been diagnosed with osteosarcoma of the mandible. He has a cancerous swelling in his jaw.

Gideon first noticed the swelling in April. He cannot chew food, and he has not been able to attend school. Fortunately, on December 6, he underwent a flap surgery to remove and replace his mandible.

Gideon lives in a house made of mud and grass. His parents are farmers, and he has five siblings. His older brother has paid Gideon’s school fees with savings from his motorcycle-transport business. His family has raised $500 to pay for his surgery, but they need help to pay the remaining $1,500 medical bill.

Treatment will reduce the chance of cancer metastasis. Gideon will be able to return to school, where he hopes to excel in his final year exams.

“I want to be well,” he says, “and continue with my education as a normal student with fewer health complications.”

Meet Gideon, an ambitious teenager about to begin his final year of high school. Gideon has been diagnosed with osteosarcoma of the mandible...

Read more

Gideon's Timeline

  • December 5, 2016
    PROFILE SUBMITTED

    Gideon was submitted by Robert Kariuki, Process Coordinator at African Mission Healthcare.

  • December 6, 2016
    TREATMENT SCHEDULED

    Gideon was scheduled to receive treatment at AIC Kijabe Hospital in Kenya. 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.

  • December 9, 2016
    PROFILE PUBLISHED

    Gideon's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • February 1, 2017
    FUNDING ENDED

    Gideon is no longer raising funds.

  • February 1, 2017
    TREATMENT UPDATE

    Gideon's treatment did not happen. Read the update.

Funded by 8 donors

Funded by 8 donors

Treatment
Mass Excision; Open Reduction Internal Fixation
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

The common symptoms of an ORIF include: extreme pain; inability and/or difficulty in using legs. Mass symptoms vary depending on the type of tumor. Not all tumors - cancerous or benign - show symptoms. A common benign tumor, such as a lipoma (fatty tumor), may cause local pressure and pain, or may be disfiguring and socially stigmatizing. This is mass excision followed by an open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) procedure. It is indicative for conditions such as ameloblastoma- a rare, benign tumor of odontogenic epithelium commonly appearing in the lower jaw. An ORIF corrects a severe, poorly aligned fracture where the ends of affected bones are far apart. Such a fracture may occur anywhere in the body (leg, hip, arm, jaw, etc.), usually as a result of trauma. Broadly, masses come in two types: benign (not cancer) and malignant (cancer). The types of tumors are many and could range from osteosarcoma of the jaw (a bone tumor) to thyroid enlargement to breast lump to fibroma (benign fat tumor), among others.

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

Without an ORIF, a non-union leads to chronic disability, pain, and inability to work. If the tumor is cancerous, it is usually aggressive and invasive. If not treated (like certain skin cancers, for example) there could be great tissue destruction, pain, deformity, and ultimately death.

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

Because there are so many different kinds of masses, it is difficult to pinpoint certain cultural and/or regional causes.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

The patient will generally stay in the hospital for 2-3 weeks after surgery, and return for a checkup in 6 weeks.

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

Curative. An ORIF fixes the broken bone restoring it to complete function and thus, enables the patient to be able to work. In the case of cancer, the procedure can be life-saving. In the case of benign tumors, patients can be free of pain or social stigma.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

In an ORIF, there is medium surgical risk. Overall, the risk of surgery is less than the risks of the alternative (traction), or doing nothing. In addition to the scenarios above, fractures may occur in older people with osteoporosis or because of cancer or infections like TB. In mass excision, if the tumor is cancerous, the surgeon will only try to remove it if the procedure would be curative. If the cancer has already spread, then surgery cannot help. Most of these surgeries are not very risky.

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

There are few quality orthopedic centres in developing countries. Any American would go to their local hospital and get an ORIF. There are few qualified facilities and surgeons to perform this procedure in Africa.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

Traction is an alternative for some—but not all—cases. And traction requires a patient to be in the hospital, immobile, for months—leading not only to lost wages but risk of bedsores, blood clots, and hospital-acquired infections. It depends on the type of tumor. If the tumor is cancerous, chemotherapy may help, but that treatment is even less available than surgery. If the tumor is benign, it depends on the condition - but just watching the mass over time would be one option.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Dar

Dar is a 21-day-old baby girl who lives with her parents and her brother in a village in the border area of Karen State in Burma. Dar was born at home with the help of a traditional birth attendant. Two days after she was born, Dar's mother noticed a problem when Dar was passing stool. She told Dar’s father to call a medic from the clinic to their home. The medic realized that Dar was born with a anorectal condition and shared with Dar’s mother that baby Dar would urgently need surgery to receive a colostomy. Dar’s parents are subsistence farmers who grow rice and raise chickens. They also forage for vegetables in the jungle and go fishing when they want to eat fish. To purchase staples that they cannot produce such as salt and oil, Dar’s father works as an agricultural day labourer during the rainy season. However, since the rainy season has not yet begun, they currently have no income. However, their daily needs are fulfilled from living off the land. If they are sick and need to seek treatment, they go to the free clinic in their village run by Burma Medical Association (BMA). Fortunately our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund is helping Dar's family access the medical care she needs. They need help raising $1,500 to fund the treatment she needs. “We had to borrow money so far for Dar’s treatment and my husband cannot work,” said Dar’s mother. “I want to send my baby to school until she graduates so that she can become educated. I want this for her future because I only went to school until grade four. After she completes her studies, she can become whatever she wants one day.”

56% funded

56%funded
$840raised
$660to go
Darensky

Darensky is a 10-year-old student from Haiti. He lives with his mother and grandparents in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. He is in the third grade and likes building things and making crafts. Darensky has a cardiac condition called patent ductus arteriosus and tracheal ring. Two holes exists between two major blood vessels near his heart; blood leaks through this hole without first passing through his lungs, leaving him weak and oxygen-deprived. The treatment that Darensky needs is not available in Haiti, so he will fly to United States to undergo surgery. Many years ago he had one hole closed so this is the second surgery he needs, and his family has been waiting for this moment for a long time. Fortunately, on March 10th, Darensky will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will close the remaining hole that leaks blood between his two main blood vessels at the same time. During the surgery, he will also have a muscular blockage removed from his trachea that affects his ability to breathe. Another organization, Akron Children's Hospital, is contributing $12,000 to help pay for surgery. Darensky's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also supports passport obtainment and the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Darensky's family overseas. HIs mother told us: "I am very happy to know that after this surgery my son will finally be able to run and play normally!"

74% funded

74%funded
$1,112raised
$388to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.