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Success! Anne from Haiti raised $1,500 to fund prep for cardiac surgery.

Anne
100%
  • $1,500 raised, $0 to go
$1,500
raised
$0
to go
Fully funded
Anne's treatment was fully funded on May 3, 2018.

Photo of Anne post-operation

April 20, 2018

Anne underwent cardiac surgery.

During surgery, surgeons used a patch to close the hole in Anne’s heart so that blood can no longer leak through it. She should be able to lead a normal life with no further symptoms from this condition.

Her mother says, “I am so excited to see Anne healthy and happy after being weak for so long!”

During surgery, surgeons used a patch to close the hole in Anne's heart so that blood can no longer leak through it. She should be able to l...

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March 30, 2018

Anne is a baby from Haiti. She lives with her mother and father in the outskirts of Port-au-Prince. She is their first child.

Anne 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 weak and short of breath.

Anne will fly to Cayman Islands to receive treatment. On April 4, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will use a patch to close the hole in her heart so that blood can no longer leak through it. Another organization, Have a Heart Cayman, is contributing $17,000 to pay for surgery.

Anne’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 Anne’s family overseas.

Her mother says, “I am nervous about the surgery but am praying that everything will go well!”

Anne is a baby from Haiti. She lives with her mother and father in the outskirts of Port-au-Prince. She is their first child. Anne has a...

Read more

Anne's Timeline

  • March 30, 2018
    PROFILE SUBMITTED

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

  • April 2, 2018
    PROFILE PUBLISHED

    Anne's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • April 3, 2018
    TREATMENT OCCURRED

    Anne received treatment at Health City Cayman Islands. 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.

  • April 20, 2018
    TREATMENT UPDATE

    Anne's treatment was successful. Read the update.

  • May 3, 2018
    FULLY FUNDED

    Anne's treatment was fully funded.

Funded by 1 donor

Profile 48x48 589fbadd efcd 4457 b1c0 38cd87c88a22

Funded by 1 donor

Profile 48x48 589fbadd efcd 4457 b1c0 38cd87c88a22
Treatment
Overseas Prep and Transportation
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $1,980 for Anne's treatment
Subsidies fund $480 and Watsi raises the remaining $1,500
Hospital Fees
$0
Medical Staff
$450
Medication
$360
Supplies
$0
Travel
$900
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 treated by Haiti Cardiac Alliance tend to fall into two categories. They are either born with some type of hole or defect in the heart, or they develop valve disease as a result of an untreated strep throat infection (rheumatic fever). Patients with rheumatic valve disease experience swelling of the abdomen and extremities, as the heart tries to circulate blood through the body despite the valve's dysfunction.

​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. If surgery is required, the child joins a triaged waitlist to be placed for surgery with partner hospitals. It can sometimes take 6-12 months to move through this waitlist. During this period, HCA provides periodic cardiac checkups, changing the patient's triage position as appropriate. The child and his/her guardian then travel to the hospital with an HCA social worker. Typically, the child spends 4-5 days in or near the hospital prior to surgery for testing and examinations. After surgery, he or she spends several more days as an inpatient prior to being discharged. When the child is strong enough to travel, usually after several more weeks, he/she returns home to Haiti. HCA provides regular cardiac checkups for at least five years postoperatively before the final discharge from their program.

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

These treatments are almost always life-saving in nature. These cardiac conditions are not survivable over the long-term without surgery. Within weeks after surgery, the patient should notice a difference in energy level. Many patients also undergo a growth spurt and/or gain significant weight after a surgery.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

The risk of death during or shortly after an open-heart surgical procedure is about 3%. Other risks, though rare, include stroke and post-operative infection. In a small percentage of cases, the material used to patch the hole "blows," and a follow-up surgery is necessary to re-patch the defect.

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

Patients come to Haiti Cardiac Alliance (HCA) from the entirety of Haiti. This can involve three days of travel in buses, pickup trucks, or even on horseback. There is no cardiac surgery of any kind available in Haiti outside of the HCA treatment network.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

In general, patients are treated with medications to prevent heart failure until they are ready to travel. Patients may also seek care from traditional healers, who may use liquids and powders derived from local plants and roots.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Mu Hee

Mu Hee is a 23-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her parents, older brother, sister in-law, three nephews and three nieces in a refugee camp. Mu Hee’s older brother is the sole income earner in their family. He works as a nurse in the camp’s hospital, which is run by International Rescue Committee (IRC). Mu Hee’s parents and her sister in-law look after the household chores. Mu Hee’s nieces and nephews are students and Mu Hee is a Bible school student. Since the outbreak of Covid-19 in March 2020, she has been studying online in the refugee camp. Her teachers support her school fees and food. In her free time, Mu Hee likes to play with her nieces and nephews. She also loves to listen to music and sing. When Mu Hee was 14 years old, she began to experience severe abdominal pain. The first time it occurred, her father called a medic who lived close to their house, and the medic gave her an injection. She felt better after the injection, but continued to feel unwell every month. When she was 15, her father took her to the clinic in the camp to check whether Mu Hee had a serious illness in her abdomen, but the medic could not find any problem. Mu Hee's pain continued and she continued to receive treatment to help, but she did not think that her condition was serious because she had heard from her friends that some women experienced pain during the first day of their period. In early 2020, Mu Hee spoke about this condition with a staff member from a nearby clinic and with one of her teachers. Both urged her to get a check-up, and in February 2020, Mu Hee went to a clinic and a medic found a mass in her left ovary. Doctors have tried to treat her with medications for almost a year, but the mass has continued to grow. During a follow-up appointment in January 2021, the doctor told her that she would need surgery. Recently, Mu Hee has experienced pain in the left side of her lower abdomen almost every day. The pain is on and off and she feels most uncomfortable when running or walking, especially over long distances. She also experiences some pain as she does other basic daily tasks. Mu Hee sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. She is now scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery, and she is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Mu Hee said, “The first time when I heard that I have a mass in my ovary, I felt very sad. I am also worried that the mass might be cancerous. I think about my condition very often, but my parents are very supportive, and they encourage me not to be afraid. I believe that I will no longer experience pain after surgery.”

86% funded

86%funded
$1,293raised
$207to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.