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Tushabomwe is a farmer and market seller from Uganda who needs $307 to fund thyroid surgery.

Tushabomwe
61%
  • $190 raised, $117 to go
$190
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$117
to go
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May 17, 2020

Tushabomwe is a 44 year old woman who lost her husband in 2009 when unfortunately they were attacked by gunmen in their house. Tushabomwe was shot in her thigh and she was pregnant with her third child, who luckily survived. Tushabomwe suspected the attack was planned by relatives and this forced her to move very far away to start a new life. She has not gotten married again.

Tushabomwe works hard, selling dry produce such as beans in the nearby markets and was able to construct a three-room semi-permanent house for shelter. She later started small-scale farming as a way to generate food for her children. Her oldest is 15 years old and in secondary school class one, her second born in primary school class seven and her youngest is 10 years old and in primary school class four. She is proud to independently take care of her children, although it is a challenge.

Tushabomwe developed a small swelling on her neck in 2019 and it kept on increasing in size as time went on. The swelling became prominent with severe pain. She went to a local health centre and was given tablets hoping that the swelling would reduce as well as the pain, but all this did not help. The swelling reduces and increases occasionally, currently, it is in its smallest size but after some time it increases in size and so does her pain. In its largest state, she has difficulty swallowing and speaking.

She decided to come to Watsi’s Medical Partner Care Center Rushoroza Hospital to seek medical advice and treatment. Doctors there told her that if not treated through a thyroidectomy, Tushabomwe may develop airway obstruction, thyrotoxicosis and further difficulty in swallowing.

Tushabomwe says, “This condition hinders the smooth running of my business because of the pain. After surgery, I will be comfortable and I will take on my business activities and be able to take care of my family.”

Tushabomwe is a 44 year old woman who lost her husband in 2009 when unfortunately they were attacked by gunmen in their house. Tushabomwe wa...

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Tushabomwe's Timeline

  • May 17, 2020
    PROFILE SUBMITTED

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

  • May 18, 2020
    PROFILE PUBLISHED

    Tushabomwe's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • May 19, 2020
    TREATMENT OCCURRED

    Tushabomwe received treatment at Rushoroza 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 08, 2020
    AWAITING UPDATE

    Awaiting Tushabomwe's treatment update from African Mission Healthcare.

  • TODAY
    AWAITING FUNDING

    Tushabomwe is currently raising funds for her treatment.

Funded by 5 donors

Funded by 5 donors

Treatment
Thyroidectomy
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $307 for Tushabomwe's treatment
Hospital Fees
$227
Medical Staff
$0
Medication
$24
Supplies
$36
Labs
$20
  • 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.

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Yin Yin

Yin Yin is a 27-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with with her husband, her sister-in-law, her sister-in-law’s husband, her niece and her niece’s two small boys. Her husband, who is the only one supporting her financially, works as a cleaner at a shopping mall. In her free time, she likes to read Burmese novels. Three years ago, when Yin Yin worked as a cleaner in Bangkok, she felt tired, had no appetite, had memory loss and frequent urination. She was brought to a hospital where she was told she has a blood clot in the back of her head. She had it removed surgically, which her employer lent her money for. On December 6th and 8th, Yin Yin had two seizures. She and her husband sought treatment at Mae Tao Clinic, where she was admitted. She does not remember what happened but was given medication and told to come back if she felt unwell. On January 14th, however, she came back to the clinic, complaining of soreness in the back of her head where her first surgery took place. She also reported continued blurry vision, memory loss and fatigue. When the weather gets cold, she feels stiff and sore in her neck and hands. MTC thought she might have encephalitis but needed a CT scan to confirm her diagnosis. Unable to pay, MTC referred her to Watsi Partner Burma Children Medical Fund for assistance in accessing further treatment. Doctors want Yin Yin to undergo a CT scan, a procedure in which x-ray images taken from several angles are combined to produce cross-sectional images of the body. This scan will hopefully help doctors diagnose her condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $414 to cover the cost of Yin Yin's CT scan and care, scheduled for January 28th. “It has been very difficult for me, but my husband gives me encouragement,” said Yin Yin.

35% funded

35%funded
$145raised
$269to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.