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Success! Aleaza from Haiti raised $1,500 to fund diagnostic testing.

Aleaza
100%
  • $1,500 raised, $0 to go
$1,500
raised
$0
to go
Fully funded
Aleaza's treatment was fully funded on September 25, 2018.

Photo of Aleaza post-operation

October 20, 2018

Aleaza underwent diagnostic testing.

A diagnostic catheterization showed that Aleaza can safely undergo open-heart surgery. Our medical partner is now working to arrange the surgery she needs in coming weeks or months.

A diagnostic catheterization showed that Aleaza can safely undergo open-heart surgery. Our medical partner is now working to arrange the sur...

Read more
July 31, 2018

Aleaza is a baby from Haiti. She lives with her mother, grandparents, and three older siblings in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince, Haiti’s capital.

Aleaza has a cardiac condition called ventricular septal defect. A hole exists between the two lower chambers of her heart. Blood leaks through this hole without first passing through the lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving her sick and short of breath. She also has a condition called pulmonary hypertension, in which the blood pressures to her lungs are higher than normal. As a result, before she can be considered for surgery, she needs to have a diagnostic catheterization procedure to ensure that surgery can be done safely.

To determine if Aleaza’s condition is operable, she must undergo a diagnostic cardiac catheterization, a procedure that is not available in Haiti. During the procedure, a catheter probe will be inserted into her heart to perform the necessary measurements and tests. On August 20, she will travel to the Dominican Republic to receive the scan at our medical partner’s care center, Clinica Corominas.

Our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is asking for $1,500 to cover the costs of Aleaza’s travel expenses, catheterization procedure, and lab work.

Her mother says, “Our family has been working very hard to try to keep Aleaza healthy so that she can have a chance for surgery.”

Aleaza is a baby from Haiti. She lives with her mother, grandparents, and three older siblings in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince, Haiti's ...

Read more

Aleaza's Timeline

  • July 31, 2018
    PROFILE SUBMITTED

    Aleaza was submitted by Owen Robinson, Executive Director at Haiti Cardiac Alliance, our medical partner in Haiti.

  • July 31, 2018
    PROFILE PUBLISHED

    Aleaza's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • September 25, 2018
    FULLY FUNDED

    Aleaza's treatment was fully funded.

  • September 28, 2018
    TREATMENT OCCURRED

    Aleaza received treatment at Clinica Corominas. 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.

  • October 20, 2018
    TREATMENT UPDATE

    Aleaza's treatment was successful. Read the update.

Treatment
Diagnostic Heart Catheterization
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $3,790 for Aleaza's treatment
Subsidies fund $2,290 and Watsi raises the remaining $1,500
Hospital Fees
$1,000
Medical Staff
$450
Medication
$360
Supplies
$0
Travel
$1,710
Labs
$180
Other
$90
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

When a hole exists in the heart, a physician can hear a buzzing noise, or murmur, in the child's chest as blood passes through the hole at high velocity. The child's parents might notice that their son or daughter cannot keep up with other children in daily activities. In severe cases, the lack of oxygen in the bloodstream can lead to dramatic symptoms, such as blue lips and tongue, clubbed fingers and toes, and heart failure. The patients who undergo diagnostic catheterization are born with one of several types of congenital holes or defects in the heart.

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

Virtually all of the conditions treated at Haiti Cardiac Alliance will eventually lead to death without surgery, the majority of them within one to two years. In the meantime, patients experience heart failure as their hearts struggle to compensate for the presence of leaks or other defects. In most conditions, the heart becomes fatigued, limiting the child's ability to be active, go to school, and participate in daily life.

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

Families in Haiti often have complex cultural mechanisms for understanding cardiac illnesses and their causes, sometimes involving voudou or other religious belief systems. Nevertheless, the overwhelming majority of Haitian families in our medical partner's program also engage with the medical explanations and treatment of these conditions. Parents are willing and cooperative participants in their child's treatment.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

The patient is first referred to our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance (HCA), by a pediatrician or another medical practitioner who detects symptoms that might be cardiac in nature. HCA staff then perform an echocardiogram to diagnose the cardiac condition. In some cases, the child may be eligible for surgery, but only after a cardiac catheterization to determine whether the pressures upon the lungs are still reversible. In this case, the child travels to the Dominican Republic to undergo this procedure. The child stay in the hospital overnight and is discharged the next day. Once the results are received, HCA can decide on next steps.

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

The cardiac catheterization itself is diagnostic in nature and does not cure the patient's heart condition. However, the patient cannot be accepted for surgery anywhere without first undergoing this procedure. It is thus a life-saving step in his or her treatment plan.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

Diagnostic catheterization is a relatively low-risk procedure. However, risks include excessive bleeding at the incision site and accidental puncture of the cardiac tissue with the catheter probe.

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

The country of Haiti currently has no cardiac catheterization lab, which is why all of HCA's patients must travel to Dominican Republic for this service.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

There are no alternatives to diagnostic catheterization for measuring pulmonary pressures and assessing surgical viability.

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.