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Joseph from Tanzania raised $838 to fund orthopedic surgery.

  • $838 raised, $0 to go
to go
Fully funded
Joseph's treatment was fully funded on March 29, 2018.

Photo of Joseph post-operation

March 2, 2018

Joseph underwent orthopedic surgery.

Joseph’s had a left osteotomy which was successful. After a full recovery, he will no longer be in pain while walking.

Joseph says, “I am so grateful for this treatment. My leg looks better and I can start walking again and play football without being in pain. I am so happy. Thank you.”

Joseph’s had a left osteotomy which was successful. After a full recovery, he will no longer be in pain while walking. Joseph says, “I a...

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February 13, 2018

Joseph is a student from Tanzania. He is the fourth born in a family of eight kids. Joseph’s father passed when Joseph was ten years old. He now lives with his uncle, a domestic poultry farmer.

Joseph was diagnosed with genu valgus. His legs bow inward so that his knees touch. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, he is not able to walk, especially for long distances.

Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $940 to fund corrective surgery for Joseph. The procedure is scheduled to take place on February 15. Treatment will hopefully restore Joseph’s mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications.

Joseph says, “Please help me get better, I want to continue with school. I started saving money from the different jobs I do so I can go back to school but used it up on medication. When I get better I will work so hard and save to go back to school.”

Joseph is a student from Tanzania. He is the fourth born in a family of eight kids. Joseph’s father passed when Joseph was ten years old. He...

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Joseph's Timeline

  • February 13, 2018

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

  • February 13, 2018

    Joseph's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • February 16, 2018

    Joseph received treatment at Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre (ALMC) in Tanzania. 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.

  • March 2, 2018

    We received an update on Joseph. Read the update.

  • March 29, 2018

    Joseph's treatment was fully funded.

Funded by 27 donors

Funded by 27 donors

Fluorosis - Genu Valgus / Varus
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $838 for Joseph's treatment
Hospital Fees
Medical Staff
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

Patients with genu valgum (or "knock-knees") have knees that bend inward and cause an abnormal walking gait. Patients with genu varum (or bowleggedness) have knees that bend outward and cause knee or hip pain and reduced range of motion in the hips.

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

The patient's mobility is hindered, which can prevent the patient from making a living through physical labor. The patient may also develop arthritis later in life.

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

In the United States, supplemental fluoride is added to the water to improve dental health. However, in areas of northern Tanzania, there is too much naturally-occurring fluoride in the water, which causes bone curvature.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

After surgery, the patient will stay in the hospital for 4-5 days. During this time, the surgical wound will be monitored for swelling and infection. The patient will complete physiotherapy to help him or her walk or move the limbs. A series of X-rays will be performed over several months to monitor the healing process.

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

The bones and joints will be aligned, and long-term disability will be prevented.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

This procedure is not risky, but it is time-consuming. The rehabilitation process can take several months.

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

Care is not easily accessible. Most patients live in remote, rural areas and are identified through mobile outreach. The pediatric surgical program at Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre was started to meet the large burden of pediatric disability in the region.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

There are no alternatives. Although some cases can heal on their own, the patients submitted to Watsi require dedicated treatment.

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Isaack is an energetic 21-year-old from Kiambu County in Kenya. He is the fourth born in a family of seven. His mother works as a housewife and his father works as a small businessman and lives in western Kenya. Isaack works on construction sites and enjoys playing football during his free time. Last Sunday, Isaack was playing football with his friends when he bumped into a fellow player and fell. Instantly they knew his injury was serious because his tibial shaft assumed a C-like shape and begun to swell. Isaack was brought to Nazareth Hospital. The fracture was stabilized with a splint. Isaack was instructed to go home and await for potential surgery while the swelling went down. Upon review by the surgeon, an implant is recommended to ensure he heals. When Isaack was informed of the money required for surgery he asked the surgeon if there was any other treatment option because he had no way to raise the funds necessary and his family was not in a position to contribute to his bill. The surgeon explained that the nature of the fracture requires surgery for proper healing and referred him to the Watsi-AMH program. If not treated the fracture on Isaack’s left leg may heal with a deformity leading to reduced functionality of his left lower limb, thus affecting his mobility, which is an important for allowing him to work and earn money to support himself and his family. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner AMH can help. On September 2nd, Isaack will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. If treated, the fracture on Isaack’s left leg will heal without any deformity and allow him to walk with ease. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. Isaack remarked, “I look forward to the day I will be able to play on the football field again and go to work with ease so that I can fend for myself as I am used to.”

74% funded

$268to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.