Chean is a 67-year-old retired rice farmer from Cambodia. Her husband is also retired, and they live together near the homes of their three children. They help to take care of their six grandchildren. Chean still works in her garden growing vegetables. In her free time she loves to read religious texts and visit the local monks to hear prayers.
Eight years ago, Chean developed a pterygium in right eye, causing her blurry vision, tearing, and severe irritation. Pterygiums are non-cancerous growths of the conjunctiva, a mucous layer that lubricates the eye. The growths occur when the conjunctiva is exposed to excessive sun damage and the cells grow abnormally over the pupil. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, working, and going anywhere outside.
When Chean learned about our medical partner, Children’s Surgical Centre, she traveled for three-and-a-half hours seeking treatment. Chean needs a surgical procedure to remove the abnormal conjunctiva from the cornea surface and replace it with a conjunctival graft to prevent recurrence. The total cost of her procedure is $216. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care for two days. The procedure is scheduled for July 7th.
Chean shared, “I hope that after this surgery my sight is good enough to read my books well and that I will be able to walk by myself to the pagodas so I can join a ceremony.”