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Success! Mealea from Cambodia raised $417 to fund contracture release surgery.

  • $417 raised, $0 to go
to go
Fully funded
Mealea's treatment was fully funded on November 4, 2020.

Photo of Mealea post-operation

December 27, 2019

Mealea underwent contracture release surgery.

Mealea’s surgery went well and she’s been working with the physiotherapy team to improve the mobility and function in her fingers. Surgery allows Mealea to greatly improve her quality of life and to move and flex her fingers again. She can go back to work without any difficulty.

“I am so happy that my surgery went well and my hand is no longer in any pain and I can return to work,” Mealea shared.

Mealea's surgery went well and she's been working with the physiotherapy team to improve the mobility and function in her fingers. Surgery a...

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December 23, 2019

Mealea has two younger brothers, and she enjoys cooking, watching television, listening to music, and helping with the housework. She helps her family sell gasoline in front of her house, but her hand often feels swollen and painful.

Mealea was born with a tumor on her left hand, which was later removed. However, she now suffers from contractures on four of her fingers. This limits her ability to work and go about her daily activities.

Surgery will help to release the contractures from her fingers and decrease any swelling, allowing her to move and flex her hand and fingers.

She shared, “I hope that after my surgery, I will no longer have any pain in my hand. I hope my hand will no longer be swollen so I can return to my work and use my hands normally.”

Mealea has two younger brothers, and she enjoys cooking, watching television, listening to music, and helping with the housework. She helps ...

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Mealea's Timeline

  • December 23, 2019

    Mealea was submitted by Lindsay Bownik, Stakeholder Relations Officer at Children's Surgical Centre.

  • December 24, 2019

    Mealea received treatment at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre in Cambodia. 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.

  • December 26, 2019

    Mealea's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • December 27, 2019

    Mealea's treatment was successful. Read the update.

  • November 4, 2020

    Mealea's treatment was fully funded.

Funded by 11 donors

Funded by 11 donors

Contracture Release Surgery
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $417 for Mealea's treatment
Hospital Fees
Medical Staff
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

Contractures are permanently shortened muscles or joints that occur most commonly in the elbow, ankle, knee, hip, and shoulder. As the muscle is unable to stretch, the affected area has considerably limited movement. Other symptoms include pain and inflammation.

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

The inability to move the affected area impacts mobility and can reduce the patient’s ability to perform daily tasks independently.

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

Trauma is a major cause of contractures, and road traffic accidents—particularly with motorcycles—are pervasive in Cambodia. In addition, the longer that the contracture goes without treatment, the less chance there is of motion recovery; the lack of many surgical centers in Cambodia means that patients do not often present early for treatment.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

Contracture release surgery aims to remove or cut the thickened scar tissue (fascia) and procedures vary depending on the joint affected. There are three main ways of treating a contracture: open fasciotomy, which cuts the fascia by cutting open the overlying skin; needle fasciotomy, which cuts through the fascia using a needle and without opening the skin; and open fasciectomy, which removes the fascia.

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

Surgical treatment of contracture restores movement to the affected area, allowing patients increased function and reduced pain.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

The surgery carries a small risk of infection and of damage to nearby tendons, blood vessels, and nerves. Postoperative complications include loss of flexion and hematoma.

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

While some treatment for contractures can be available locally, certain contractures need surgery to restore motion. Affordable surgical care is not very accessible, and so patients travel as much as twelve hours to reach Children's Surgical Centre for free surgery, arriving by bus, motorbike, or taxi.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

Physical therapy, splinting, and other exercises may be able to increase movement if the contracture is only in the muscles; joint contractures and contractures that do not respond to other treatments may require a surgery to restore function of the affected area.

Meet another patient you can support

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Gay is a one-year-old boy living with his family in a refugee camp. His family is originally from Burma, but they left for Thailand due to conflict in the area. Gay lives with his parents, grandparents, aunt, uncle, and brother. Gay and his brother are too young to go to school, so they stay home with their mother. Gay's aunt and uncle are in school, while his father and grandfather work on a farm near the refugee camp. Gay was born with an inguinal hernia. The condition causes him severe pain, and he often cries, so his mother sits quietly with him to help reduce the pain he is experiencing. Gay needs to undergo surgery to finally heal. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), can help Gay receive treatment. On May 27th, he will undergo hernia repair surgery to help him live more comfortably in the future. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to fund his procedure and care. Gay's mother shared, “I have to be with him constantly. He cries and does not let anyone else hold him except me. I also have to look after my mother and sister, and sometimes we do not have time to cook. I cannot take care of everyone. I felt so happy when I heard that an organization will pay for my son's surgery. I would like to say thank you to all the donors who will help my son. I believe my son will get better soon and that he will grow up without feeling ashamed of himself due to his condition. I want him to become an educated person in the future.”

65% funded

$520to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.