Meet another patient

Watsi logo blueWatsi

Success! Merida from Uganda raised $333 to fund thyroidectomy surgery so she can breathe comfortably again.

Merida
100%
  • $333 raised, $0 to go
$333
raised
$0
to go
Fully funded
Merida's treatment was fully funded on January 13, 2022.

Photo of Merida post-operation

January 25, 2022

Merida underwent thyroidectomy surgery so she can breathe easily again.

Merida’s surgery was a success! After ten years of experiencing increasing swelling on her neck and difficulty breathing, Merida’s thyroidectomy procedure will finally allow her to live comfortably. She will no longer experience difficulty bending down and carrying loads, especially for her agricultural produce. She also hopes to be able to sleep comfortably again without her breathing complications.

Merida shared, “I thank the Watsi program and Rushoroza Hospital for making my surgery a success. I pray that you may continue helping people because my family could hardly afford this surgery. Thank you for restoring my lost hope.”

Merida's surgery was a success! After ten years of experiencing increasing swelling on her neck and difficulty breathing, Merida's thyroidec...

Read more
November 8, 2021

Merida is a 63-year-old small-scale farmer. She has five children ranging in age from 20 years old to 40 years old. Her husband passed away about six years ago. She shared that her children could not attend school beyond class five and that their responsibilities limit them from providing financial support.

About ten years ago, Merida experienced swelling in her neck that increased in size over time. Merida is unable to bend down comfortably and experiences airway blockage when she carries heavy loads and has heaviness in her shoulders. She can also no longer breathe well while sleeping. She has used herbs for healing and recently visited the hospital at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH). The doctors diagnosed her condition as a goiter, which is an abnormal enlargement of the thyroid gland. They recommended a thyroidectomy, which will address her symptoms and prevent the risk that the condition may become cancerous and cause difficulty breathing and eating over time.

On November 9th, Merida will undergo a thyroidectomy at AMH’s care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. AMH is requesting $333 to fund Merida’s surgery.

Merida shared, “I pray that I may be considered for treatment so that I may get relief from the swollen neck that I have carried for a very long time. I hope to look normal again and live a better, happy, and enjoyable life for the rest of my life. I will resume farming as soon as possible.”

Merida is a 63-year-old small-scale farmer. She has five children ranging in age from 20 years old to 40 years old. Her husband passed away ...

Read more

Merida's Timeline

  • November 8, 2021
    PROFILE SUBMITTED

    Merida was submitted by Edward Mugane, Impact Assessment Coordinator at African Mission Healthcare.

  • November 9, 2021
    TREATMENT OCCURRED

    Merida received treatment at Rushoroza Hospital in Uganda. 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.

  • November 10, 2021
    PROFILE PUBLISHED

    Merida's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • January 13, 2022
    FULLY FUNDED

    Merida's treatment was fully funded.

  • January 25, 2022
    TREATMENT UPDATE

    Merida's treatment was successful. Read the update.

Funded by 6 donors

Funded by 6 donors

Treatment
Thyroidectomy
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $333 for Merida's treatment
Hospital Fees
$233
Medical Staff
$12
Medication
$9
Supplies
$51
Labs
$12
Other
$16
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

Patients in need of a thyroidectomy often present with a small thyroid growth (nodule or cyst), a thyroid gland that is so overactive it is dangerous (thyrotoxicosis), cancer of the thyroid, noncancerous (benign) tumors of the thyroid that are causing symptoms, or thyroid swelling (nontoxic goiter) that makes it hard to breathe or swallow. Patients in need of thyroid surgery often present with nervousness, anxiety, rapid heartbeat, hand tremor, excessive sweating, weight loss, and sleep problems, among other symptoms.

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

The thyroid gland is an organ located in the front of your neck that releases hormones that control your metabolism (the way your body uses energy), breathing, heart rate, nervous system, weight, body temperature, and many other functions in the body. When the thyroid gland is overactive (hyperthyroidism) the body’s processes speed up and you may experience nervousness, anxiety, rapid heartbeat, hand tremor, excessive sweating, weight loss, and sleep problems, among other symptoms.

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

Thyroid disorders are relatively common in the African continent. Iodine deficiency, although still the commonly documented cause of thyroid disorders in Africa, is not as rampant as it used to be. There is a compelling need to set up thyroid disorder registries in order to determine not only the scope of the burden of these disorders, but also to document changing trends, if any, especially given the background of widespread iodization programs. Thyroid cancer is the most common endocrine cancer, and its incidence has continuously increased in the last three decades all over the world. This trend is present on every continent except Africa, where detection is possibly insufficient.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

Thyroid surgery takes approximately 3-8 hours depending on the patient. Patients will stay in the hospital for a maximum of 6-8 weeks or as needed for recovery. A patient will usually have one follow-up appointment in six weeks.

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

In cases involving thyroid cancer, the surgery is the patient’s best chance of preventing the spread of cancer and saving the patient’s life. For hyperthyroidism, the treatment helps stabilize the hormones that regulate metabolism and effectively treat some of the symptoms that the patient presents with such as rapid heartbeat and anxiety.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

Thyroid surgery is often 90% curative if diagnosis happens early. For benign tumors and hyperthyroidism, the surgery is more than 90% curative. The surgery comes with few risks.

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.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

Surgery is the only treatment offered for thyroid cancer and hyperthyroidism. This is because radiotherapy and medication alternatives are not easily accessible in the county. Also, the cost of treating with radiotherapy and medication is higher than that of surgery.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Ann

Meet Ann, a very bright, friendly, and cheerful 14-year-old girl who lives with her mother in Kenya. She is currently in class six and aspires to be a surgeon after completing her studies. One of her favorite activities is reading. Her mother is a single parent who works selling samosas, a fried or baked pastry, in their hometown. Ann was born with a bow-legged impairment. She began therapy at the age of two, but she had to stop attending her sessions due to financial constraints. As a result, her condition has worsened. She shares that this has affected her mobility, studies, and self-esteem. A year ago, Ann underwent a successful multiple osteotomy surgery, which cut and reshaped her leg bones, with the help of amazing Watsi supporters. Now, she requires a second procedure to fully treat her condition in both of her legs. Ann is scheduled to undergo an angular deformity correction procedure on August 29th at our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is seeking $1,224 to fund this surgery. This procedure will allow Ann to walk easily, engage with her friends more comfortably, and continue on with her studies. Ann's mother says, "I wish to thank the donors for their great support towards my daughter's treatment. We were desperately looking for funds for her surgery. May the almighty God bless you. After her treatment, Ann will be able to walk comfortably."

46% funded

46%funded
$570raised
$654to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Ann

Meet Ann, a very bright, friendly, and cheerful 14-year-old girl who lives with her mother in Kenya. She is currently in class six and aspires to be a surgeon after completing her studies. One of her favorite activities is reading. Her mother is a single parent who works selling samosas, a fried or baked pastry, in their hometown. Ann was born with a bow-legged impairment. She began therapy at the age of two, but she had to stop attending her sessions due to financial constraints. As a result, her condition has worsened. She shares that this has affected her mobility, studies, and self-esteem. A year ago, Ann underwent a successful multiple osteotomy surgery, which cut and reshaped her leg bones, with the help of amazing Watsi supporters. Now, she requires a second procedure to fully treat her condition in both of her legs. Ann is scheduled to undergo an angular deformity correction procedure on August 29th at our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is seeking $1,224 to fund this surgery. This procedure will allow Ann to walk easily, engage with her friends more comfortably, and continue on with her studies. Ann's mother says, "I wish to thank the donors for their great support towards my daughter's treatment. We were desperately looking for funds for her surgery. May the almighty God bless you. After her treatment, Ann will be able to walk comfortably."

46% funded

46%funded
$570raised
$654to go