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Joseph is a hard-working young man from Kenya who needs $471 to fund a massive hernia surgery.

Joseph
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  • $171 raised, $299 to go
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May 25, 2020

Joseph is a 19-year-old joyful boy who hails from the Mount Elgon area in Kenya. He shared that he is known around the village as the guy with the large mass due to his protruding hernia on his abdomen.

In February 2019, Joseph was involved in a road traffic accident when he was headed home from his daily labor. He sustained injuries in his stomach where he was rushed to a hospital and an exploratory laparotomy was done. A few days later, Joseph was discharged from hospital and as his wounds were healing he started developing a mass on his stomach.

Joseph feared to go to the hospital again because he didn’t want to be in pain. As the mass grew bigger, Joseph started worrying about his life. He went to his church pastor where the church raised money to send him to the capital city to get it removed but they were told he needed a specialist who demanded a lot of money which they could not afford. Joseph had given up on the possibility of getting treated. It was not until a friend asked his pastor to bring him to our hospital, where he was diagnosed with an incisional hernia that he was happy to be told that his condition can be treated.

Joseph’s father died of illness while he was young. He dropped out of school in Grade 4 because his mother re-married and she didn’t have money to send him to school, so he began to work in farms to help get money for his daily needs like food. Joseph works in the farms and gardens and enjoys planting and farming. He wants to be able to have a big farm and grow lots of vegetables, corn, and millet.

Joseph has gone to other doctors to help with his mass but everyone said it wasn’t operable. He is most disturbed by the way people who stare at him. Joseph is a very practical man and looks forward to going back to his farm and working hard to have a good crop and harvest and have a good life.

Joseph is worried that he might not get a wife due to his condition. He is also facing stigma by people talking about his condition and has been denied work. If he is not treated, his condition will continue to worsen and his future plans feel bleak to him if he does not get treatment.

Joseph told us, “I just want to be able to find a girl to marry and have a family.”

Joseph is a 19-year-old joyful boy who hails from the Mount Elgon area in Kenya. He shared that he is known around the village as the guy wi...

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Joseph's Timeline

  • May 25, 2020
    PROFILE SUBMITTED

    Joseph was submitted by Joan Kadagaya, Curative Medical Support Program-Partner Representative at African Mission Healthcare, our medical partner in Kenya.

  • May 26, 2020
    PROFILE PUBLISHED

    Joseph's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • May 27, 2020
    TREATMENT OCCURRED

    Joseph received treatment at AIC Kapsowar Hospital. 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 09, 2020
    AWAITING UPDATE

    Awaiting Joseph's treatment update from African Mission Healthcare.

  • TODAY
    AWAITING FUNDING

    Joseph is currently raising funds for his treatment.

Funded by 9 donors

Funded by 9 donors

Treatment
Double Hernia/ Hydrocele Repair
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $471 for Joseph's treatment
Hospital Fees
$126
Medical Staff
$173
Medication
$65
Supplies
$94
Labs
$13
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

A hernia occurs when a portion of the intestine protrudes through the lower abdominal wall, usually for one of two reasons. The first is a congenital abnormality in which the tissues did not close. The second is excessive stress in an adult, often due to heavy physical labor or pregnancy. Patients experience a bulge or lump in the affected area. The hernia may cause the patient to feel pain, discomfort, weakness, pressure, and sensations of heaviness or aching. These symptoms are often exacerbated when the patient coughs, bends over, or lifts heavy objects. In some cases, hernias have no symptoms and are only detected during routine medical exams.

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

Patients with uncomplicated hernias may experience only annoyance or discomfort. As the hernia opening expands, the discomfort will increase. Small openings are more likely to trap the intestine, potentially leading to intestinal damage or death.

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

Hernias are common in Africa. People often do very hard physical labor and lift heavy objects. Women tend to have more children than those in the United States. It is possible that some hernias have infectious or genetic causes.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

Surgery lasts for three to eight hours, depending on the age of the patient and the severity of the hernia. The patient will stay in the hospital anywhere from two days to eight weeks, again depending on the age of the patient and the severity of the hernia. The patient is continually monitored.

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

Treatment is curative. The chance of intestinal strangulation or bowel obstruction reduces significantly.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

Hernia repair is not a risky procedure, and it comes with few side effects.

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

Many patients will ignore a hernia until it becomes uncomfortable and seek care at that time. Some people will wear tighter pants or a tight band around the waist to prevent the intestine from protruding.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

If the hernia is not “stuck,” patients tend to ignore it and adapt to living with it. However, this could lead to future complications.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.