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Success! Joan from Uganda raised $252 to fund thyroid surgery so she can breath and sleep easily again.

Joan
100%
  • $252 raised, $0 to go
$252
raised
$0
to go
Fully funded
Joan's treatment was fully funded on August 7, 2022.

Photo of Joan post-operation

August 31, 2022

Joan underwent thyroid surgery so she can breath and sleep easily again.

Joan received a thyroidectomy treatment after being diagnosed with an obstructing goiter. She had a successful surgery. Joan no longer has shortness of breath, difficulty in breathing, or gets easily fatigued. With a full recovery, she is looking forward to farming in good health.

Joan says, “I have never believed that someday I will be free from all the pain I had. I thank God that I am fine now. May the Lord bless you for making it possible for me to undergo my surgery.”

Joan received a thyroidectomy treatment after being diagnosed with an obstructing goiter. She had a successful surgery. Joan no longer has s...

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March 28, 2022

Joan is a farmer and a mother from Rukungiri district in southwest Uganda. She is married and is a mother of six, with two sons, both studying in school, and four daughters, all of whom are married and small-scale farmers. She managed to complete seventh grade in primary school but never proceeded due to a lack of money for school fees. Joan and her husband do farming and grow food crops for home consumption, but often sell off the surplus to generate an income for their family.

Five years ago, Joan began to experience troubling symptoms, including a lot of pain; she can’t turn her head sideways; she feels congested with difficulty breathing; she gets fatigued easily and has shortness of breath whenever she lies down to sleep. She first went to Kisiizi hospital, where she was diagnosed and was asked to first pay for her surgery, which she couldn’t raise, but when she was oriented about a surgical support program, she decided to come to see if she could be supported. She was diagnosed with a goiter and needs surgery to prevent her symptoms from getting worse.

Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Joan receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on March 29th at our medical partner’s care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $252, and she and her family need help raising money.

Joan says, “I am really in deep pain, but I hope to get healed once I receive this surgery.”

Joan is a farmer and a mother from Rukungiri district in southwest Uganda. She is married and is a mother of six, with two sons, both studyi...

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Joan's Timeline

  • March 28, 2022
    PROFILE SUBMITTED

    Joan was submitted by Joan Kadagaya, Curative Medical Support Program-Partner Representative at African Mission Healthcare.

  • March 29, 2022
    TREATMENT OCCURRED

    Joan received treatment at Karoli Lwanga Hospital, Nyakibale 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.

  • April 5, 2022
    PROFILE PUBLISHED

    Joan's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • August 7, 2022
    FULLY FUNDED

    Joan's treatment was fully funded.

  • August 31, 2022
    TREATMENT UPDATE

    Joan's treatment was successful. Read the update.

Funded by 5 donors

Funded by 5 donors

Treatment
Thyroidectomy
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $252 for Joan's treatment
Hospital Fees
$163
Medical Staff
$0
Medication
$22
Supplies
$49
Labs
$6
Other
$12
  • 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, anxiety etc.

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?

In Kenya, 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.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.