Htay is a 54-year-old single woman from Burma. She lives with her sister, three nephews and a niece in Mudon Township, Mon State, Burma. Her nephew and her sister work on a rubber farm while her two other nephews go to school. Her oldest nephew also works in a phone shop. Htay is a homemaker and she does not have income. She lives and eats with her nephews and niece.
Htay was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of her mitral valve, the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions may cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow.
When Htay was 30 years old, she started to feel tired, and experienced shortness of breath and difficulty breathing at night. She went to the Yangon General Hospital for treatment. At the hospital, she was diagnosed with mitral valve stenosis and she underwent a procedure called a balloon valvotomy to widen the too narrow valve in her heart. She was fine after her treatment. Four years later, she started to experience shortness of breath, difficulty breathing and could no longer do household chores. However, she did not go to the hospital as she could not afford to pay for further treatment. On the 5th of July 2019, her niece’s husband suggested she seek treatment at Pinlon Hospital, where he had also received surgery in the past. She followed her niece’s husband’s advice and went to Pinlon Hospital. At the hospital she received another screening and the doctor told her she needs to replace one of the valves in her heart.
Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Htay. The treatment is scheduled to take place on February 19th and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably.
Htay said, “After I went to Yangon Hospital several times and the doctor said that I had to have surgery as soon as possible, I felt so sad, but I tried to keep up my courage to stay strong. I secretly sold three acres of my farmland which my parents gave me. [However, I did not receive surgery] because if I would have died after surgery, my sister would have had difficulty paying for my funeral, so I was waiting and praying to meet with donors for a long time. Now, I feel less stressed since I talked to Burma Children Medical Fund staff. Thank you everyone for helping me!”