Meet another patient

Watsi logo blueWatsi

Success! Elisa from Malawi raised $650 to fund a hysterectomy.

Elisa
100%
  • $650 raised, $0 to go
$650
raised
$0
to go
Fully funded
Elisa's treatment was fully funded on June 22, 2017.

Photo of Elisa post-operation

July 14, 2017

Elisa underwent a hysterectomy.

Elisa’s surgery was a success! She is feeling very happy and excited to return home healthy.

She says, “I had no money to pay. Thank you, Watsi, for the support.”

Elisa's surgery was a success! She is feeling very happy and excited to return home healthy. She says, "I had no money to pay. Thank you,...

Read more
May 29, 2017

Elisa is a 36-year-old farmer from Malawi. She lives with her aunt, and both of them work together to look after their farm.

Elisa leads a busy life. She spends her days tending the garden, cooking, and washing. At night, she attends a school for adults. When Elisa has free time, she loves catching up with her friends.

Elisa has been diagnosed with a case of uterine fibroids. This has caused her considerable pain and discomfort for the last five months. Doctors have now recommended that Elisa undergo a hysterectomy to remove the fibroids.

Her surgery is scheduled for May 30. Our medical partner, World Altering Medicine, is asking for donations to the amount of $650 to cover Elisa’s surgery.

Elisa shares that she is looking forward to her operation so she can get back to her farm and her studies.

Elisa is a 36-year-old farmer from Malawi. She lives with her aunt, and both of them work together to look after their farm. Elisa leads ...

Read more

Elisa's Timeline

  • May 29, 2017
    PROFILE SUBMITTED

    Elisa was submitted by Alison Corbit, Project Coordinator at World Altering Medicine.

  • May 30, 2017
    TREATMENT OCCURRED

    Elisa received treatment at Nkhoma Hospital in Malawi. 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.

  • June 5, 2017
    PROFILE PUBLISHED

    Elisa's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • June 22, 2017
    FULLY FUNDED

    Elisa's treatment was fully funded.

  • July 14, 2017
    TREATMENT UPDATE

    Elisa's treatment was successful. Read the update.

Funded by 2 donors

Funded by 2 donors

Treatment
Hysterectomy
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $650 for Elisa's treatment
Hospital Fees
$373
Medical Staff
$12
Medication
$236
Supplies
$0
Travel
$7
Labs
$22
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

Patients requiring hysterectomies at our medical partner's care center generally have one of three conditions: uterine fibroids, cervical cancer, or chronic bleeding. Women with uterine fibroids may experience chronic pelvic pain. Women with cervical cancer are often symptom-free and are only diagnosed upon screening. Finally, women with chronic bleeding experience atypical and excessive vaginal bleeding.

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

These three conditions may impact the patient's life in different ways. Women with pelvic pain and bleeding may be unable to work or be active. Women who experience bleeding may feel weak, due to the loss of blood and inaccessibility of blood products in Malawi. Women with cervical cancer are at risk of cancer metastasis.

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

Cervical cancer is the top killer of women in Malawi, which has the highest rate of this type of cancer in the world. There are several factors that lead to these high rates, including early sexual initiation, high HIV prevalence, and lack of screening and treatment. Although health facilities nationwide are supposed to provide screenings, many do not. Therefore, women are never screened, and the cancer can progress to an untreatable stage. In addition, women with cervical cancer often experience no symptoms and may not go in for a screening. Women with vaginal bleeding may experience stigmatization. In Malawi, menstruation can be a challenge. It is difficult to keep fabric clean, as there is often little access to sanitary products.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

A hysterectomy is a surgical operation to remove all or part of the uterus. Surgeons perform radical hysterectomies on women with cervical cancer. This is an aggressive surgical approach to combat cancer. Women with fibroids or bleeding may receive alternative treatments before a hysterectomy.

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

For patients with cervical cancer, a hysterectomy is a lifesaving operation. Without treatment, the cancer will continue to spread and ultimately become untreatable. Chemotherapy has not been proven effective in treating cervical cancer, so a hysterectomy is the best option for women. Women with fibroids or bleeding will be able to return to their daily lives without chronic pain and bleeding.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

There are risks associated with any surgical procedure. In this case, there is a risk of damage to the ureters and the tubes that connect the kidney to the bladder, as they are near the reproductive system.

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

There is one public hospital in Malawi's Central Region that provides hysterectomies. Unfortunately, the wait time can be very, very long. Women may not be treated in time or may stop showing up for scheduled surgeries as they continue to be delayed. Other private facilities provide hysterectomies, but at rates that are unaffordable to our patients.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

For patients with cervical cancer, there are no good alternatives. For patients with fibroids, it is possible to remove the fibroid alone. This procedure is often done on young women who are still of childbearing age. Some women with fibroids or bleeding receive hormonal treatment before attempting a hysterectomy. In many cases, less aggressive treatments are tried before the patient receives a hysterectomy.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Ar

Ar is a 28-year-old man who lives with his wife, three sons, and two daughters in a refugee camp. Originally from Burma, his family fled to Thailand 20 years ago due to civil war. His children attend school, except for his youngest daughter, who is not yet old enough. His wife is a homemaker and Ar works as a day laborer when work is available. Ar's family shared that, in addition to his day laborer pay, they receive a monthly cash card from The Border Consortium to purchase food in the refugee camp. Overall, the family's total monthly income is just enough to cover their basic needs. On September 2nd, Ar climbed a tamarind tree to pick tamarinds fruit. When the branch he was standing on suddenly broke, he fell and landed on his right arm and experienced pain in his back. He visited the camp hospital that day, and the medic initially determined that his arm was not broken. Due to recent positive COVID-19 cases in the refugee camp, Ar could not be immediately referred to the local hospital for further testing and was kept for observation at the camp hospital. When the pain in Ar's back and arm did not subside the next day, the medic referred Ar to the local hospital. After receiving a negative COVID-19 test, Ar was finally able to visit the hospital on September 6th, where he received an X-ray for his arm and a blood test for a second COVID-19 test. The X-ray revealed that his upper right arm is broken. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), Ar will undergo surgery on September 8th to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure will enable Ar to continue working in the future. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Ar shared, "I am scared to receive surgery. But I was told that I will not be able to work using my right arm if I do not receive surgery, so I gave my consent to the doctor. I hope that I will be able to work again after I receive treatment."

48% funded

48%funded
$725raised
$775to go
James

James is former motorbike taxi driver from Kenya. He's married and is the father of two children 13 and 6 years old. James' wife is works part-time on a rice farm in their hometown. The family currently lives in a rental house paid for by their local church pastor. In November 2017, James was in a motorbike accident. Due to the accident, he lost his job, and he shared that his life became one revolving around experiencing pain and constant hospital visits. He underwent surgery on his broken leg in a nearby health facility in his hometown. Following the procedure he had a challenging recovery due to infections, causing him sleepless nights and visits to different healthcare facilities. James was finally referred to our medical partner's care center Kijabe Hospital where he underwent several treatments in May. James returned home but later came back to the hospital with a wounded leg that was in bad shape with an exposed bone. The doctors originally admitted James for repair surgery, but determined he needed a below-knee amputation which took place in mid-June. James still experiences a lot of pain, so the surgeon recommend he undergo another round of intense debridement in the amputated area to remove his damaged tissue and help him to finally heal. James has national health insurance, which supported his two major surgeries, but his coverage has been depleted and will not support the care he needs now. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping James receive treatment. On June 25th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to prevent the spread of infection and speed up his recovery. Now, James needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. James wishes to be free from pain, “I, unfortunately, lost my leg due to a sudden amputation, and I am still in shock. I will never be able to use both legs again. I am still in a lot of pain and the wound needs another procedure for me to be well. I need to get out of the hospital and figure out how to take care of my family with my current condition.”

88% funded

88%funded
$1,053raised
$132to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Ar

Ar is a 28-year-old man who lives with his wife, three sons, and two daughters in a refugee camp. Originally from Burma, his family fled to Thailand 20 years ago due to civil war. His children attend school, except for his youngest daughter, who is not yet old enough. His wife is a homemaker and Ar works as a day laborer when work is available. Ar's family shared that, in addition to his day laborer pay, they receive a monthly cash card from The Border Consortium to purchase food in the refugee camp. Overall, the family's total monthly income is just enough to cover their basic needs. On September 2nd, Ar climbed a tamarind tree to pick tamarinds fruit. When the branch he was standing on suddenly broke, he fell and landed on his right arm and experienced pain in his back. He visited the camp hospital that day, and the medic initially determined that his arm was not broken. Due to recent positive COVID-19 cases in the refugee camp, Ar could not be immediately referred to the local hospital for further testing and was kept for observation at the camp hospital. When the pain in Ar's back and arm did not subside the next day, the medic referred Ar to the local hospital. After receiving a negative COVID-19 test, Ar was finally able to visit the hospital on September 6th, where he received an X-ray for his arm and a blood test for a second COVID-19 test. The X-ray revealed that his upper right arm is broken. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), Ar will undergo surgery on September 8th to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure will enable Ar to continue working in the future. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Ar shared, "I am scared to receive surgery. But I was told that I will not be able to work using my right arm if I do not receive surgery, so I gave my consent to the doctor. I hope that I will be able to work again after I receive treatment."

48% funded

48%funded
$725raised
$775to go