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Success! Joseph from Kenya raised $1,097 to fund spinal surgery.

Joseph
100%
  • $1,097 raised, $0 to go
$1,097
raised
$0
to go
Fully funded
Joseph's treatment was fully funded on December 18, 2017.

Photo of Joseph post-operation

August 25, 2017

Joseph underwent spinal surgery.

Joseph’s surgery to repair the open spnal defect was successful. His treatment has reduced the risk of infections and prevented development of tethered cord.

“I appreciate your commitment. I will never forget your generosity towards us,” says Joseph’s mother.

Joseph’s surgery to repair the open spnal defect was successful. His treatment has reduced the risk of infections and prevented development ...

Read more
June 19, 2017

Joseph is a 14-month-old baby who lives with his parents in Kenya. His mother is a subsistence farmer, and his father is a motorbike taxi driver.

At birth, Joseph was diagnosed with spina bifida, which has led to the development of hydrocephalus. Spina bifida refers to an incomplete closure of the spinal cord, which puts Joseph at risk of infection of exposed nervous tissue, a tethered spinal cord, loss of muscular function in his lower limbs, and intensification of his hydrocephalus, which is a build-up of cerebrospinal fluid in the brain.

Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,097 to fund spina bifida closure surgery for Joseph, which is scheduled to take place on June 21. A local NGO, APDK, is subsidizing $206 of Joseph’s treatment.

Joseph’s mother says, “I am devastated. I wake up every morning to the painful reminder that this isn’t a dream. I go to bed every night hopeless, exhausted from worry and despair. My one lingering thought is, ‘Why my baby?’”

Joseph is a 14-month-old baby who lives with his parents in Kenya. His mother is a subsistence farmer, and his father is a motorbike taxi dr...

Read more

Joseph's Timeline

  • June 19, 2017
    PROFILE SUBMITTED

    Joseph was submitted by Maya Murao, Fellow at African Mission Healthcare.

  • June 28, 2017
    TREATMENT OCCURRED

    Joseph received treatment at BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital (BKKH) 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.

  • July 7, 2017
    PROFILE PUBLISHED

    Joseph's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • August 25, 2017
    TREATMENT UPDATE

    Joseph's treatment was successful. Read the update.

  • December 18, 2017
    FULLY FUNDED

    Joseph's treatment was fully funded.

Funded by 18 donors

Funded by 18 donors

Treatment
Spina Bifida Closure
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $1,097 for Joseph's treatment
Hospital Fees
$889
Medical Staff
$0
Medication
$82
Supplies
$0
Labs
$126
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

The patient has a mass or lesion on the back that leaks cerebral spinal fluid, which puts him or her at risk of infection.

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

Spina bifida can cause incontinence, bladder and kidney damage, and paralysis and numbness in the lower limbs, bladder, and sphincter. It can also lead to hydrocephalus as a result of disturbance to the fluid in the brain. Hydrocephalus can lead to cognitive dysfunction, blindness, and death.

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

Spina bifida is more common in developing countries due to improper and inadequate nutrition. Foods containing folic acid are scarce, and food is not fortified. In Kenya, however, the Ministry of Health has recently started a program to give expectant mothers folic acid for free at government facilities.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

After surgery, the patient's hospital stay ranges from two days to three weeks. The length of stay depends on the healing rate of the wound and will be extended if the patient also undergoes a shunt insertion to treat hydrocephalus. However, shunt insertions are usually performed about one month after this surgery. The patient is continually monitored. If the wound heals and the patient is in a neurologically stable condition, the surgery is considered successful.

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

Surgery performed within the first days of a child’s life prevents infection and saves the spine and brain from further damage. Early surgery also minimizes the risk of paralysis. Later treatment may save the child's life and prevent further damage.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

This surgery is moderately risky, and complications depend on the severity of the case.

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

There are few quality care centers in the region. Hospitals lack adequate resources and expertise to treat this condition. With about one neurosurgeon per 10,000,000 people in East Africa, initial treatment for spina bifida is often unavailable.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

Surgery is the primary option for most types of spina bifida.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Benjamin

Benjamin is a father of a four-year-old child who works as a motorbike (boda-boda) driver, earning about $3.70USD per day. His income is also inconsistent and depends on the availability of customers. He is the sole breadwinner for his family. Unfortunately, he has no active medical insurance coverage and has had to rely on relatives and friends to settle hospital bills. Benjamin is full of smiles but finds it difficult to sit up while sharing his story. He opts to talk while lying flat on his back. Benjamin is currently immobile, unable to sit and walk, as a result of a road traffic accident from the beginning of the month. When the 25-year-old hitched a ride on his friend's water truck, the vehicle lost control and he was thrown out the window. He immediately experienced severe back pain and lost consciousness. The accident left Benjamin with multiple fractures and wounds that will require several fracture repair and spine surgeries in order for him to sit, walk, and be able to continue with his normal routine roles again. After stays at various hospitals and numerous referrals, Benjamin arrived at our medical partner's care center, Kijabe Hospital, for care on July 17th. One of the obstacles to treatment he had faced at other hospitals was a long waiting list that meant a delay in much-needed care, but fortunately Kijabe is able to offer his needed care more urgently. At Kijabe Hospital, the doctors recommended a spinal fusion procedure for him to help regain his mobility. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $1,500 for Benjamin's critical surgery, scheduled to take place on July 26th. Benjamin shares, “I just sleep on my back and cannot even sit or walk. I cannot work and fend for my family. I need this surgery to get back to my Boda-boda job and raise my family."

89% funded

89%funded
$1,343raised
$157to go
Shallon

Shallon is a farmer from Uganda. She completed primary school class six and then had to leave school. Together with her husband, they have 6 children, including a set of twins. They live in a two-roomed mud-built house. Their firstborn child is 14 years old while the last borns are in junior class and aged 5 years. Shallon and her husband work hard to meet all the daily needs of their family. During her free time, she enjoys tending to her family and spending time with her children. Shallon is currently expecting twins. Her doctors recommend that she deliver via a Caesarean section because she has a twin pregnancy, and one of the twins is lying transversely, or sideways. Shallon received a full antenatal package at a local health centre and when she drew closer to the expected day of delivery, she came to Rushoroza Hospital. She was reviewed and surgery was recommended. An attempt to deliver normally could rupture Shallon's uterus. She is not able to meet the cost of surgery and is appealing for help. By delivering her babies via C-section, doctors can ensure the safety of both mother and children. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Shallon undergo a C-Section on August 18th. This procedure will cost $207, and Shallon requests your support. Shallon says, “I pray for a successful surgery. I will resume farming alongside my husband as soon as I get well to be able to continue supporting and taking good care of my family.”

0% funded

0%funded
$0raised
$207to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Benjamin

Benjamin is a father of a four-year-old child who works as a motorbike (boda-boda) driver, earning about $3.70USD per day. His income is also inconsistent and depends on the availability of customers. He is the sole breadwinner for his family. Unfortunately, he has no active medical insurance coverage and has had to rely on relatives and friends to settle hospital bills. Benjamin is full of smiles but finds it difficult to sit up while sharing his story. He opts to talk while lying flat on his back. Benjamin is currently immobile, unable to sit and walk, as a result of a road traffic accident from the beginning of the month. When the 25-year-old hitched a ride on his friend's water truck, the vehicle lost control and he was thrown out the window. He immediately experienced severe back pain and lost consciousness. The accident left Benjamin with multiple fractures and wounds that will require several fracture repair and spine surgeries in order for him to sit, walk, and be able to continue with his normal routine roles again. After stays at various hospitals and numerous referrals, Benjamin arrived at our medical partner's care center, Kijabe Hospital, for care on July 17th. One of the obstacles to treatment he had faced at other hospitals was a long waiting list that meant a delay in much-needed care, but fortunately Kijabe is able to offer his needed care more urgently. At Kijabe Hospital, the doctors recommended a spinal fusion procedure for him to help regain his mobility. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $1,500 for Benjamin's critical surgery, scheduled to take place on July 26th. Benjamin shares, “I just sleep on my back and cannot even sit or walk. I cannot work and fend for my family. I need this surgery to get back to my Boda-boda job and raise my family."

89% funded

89%funded
$1,343raised
$157to go