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Success! Ruth from Malawi raised $650 to fund gynecological surgery.

Ruth
100%
  • $650 raised, $0 to go
$650
raised
$0
to go
Fully funded
Ruth's treatment was fully funded on January 5, 2019.

Photo of Ruth post-operation

November 2, 2018

Ruth underwent gynecological surgery.

Ruth is very happy to be in better health due to this procedure. She is going to return to her farming.

She says, “I wish more days for you and this program to be helping people with good health!”

Ruth is very happy to be in better health due to this procedure. She is going to return to her farming. She says, "I wish more days for ...

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October 17, 2018

Ruth is a mother of four and grandmother to four from Malawi. She is a farmer who is also responsible for household chores such as cleaning, fetching water, and tending to her garden.

Since October 2016, Ruth has been experiencing abdominal pain and urinary pain. She has been diagnosed with uterine fibroids. She needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus.

Our medical partner, World Altering Medicine, is requesting $650 to fund Ruth’s surgery. On October 23, she will undergo gynecological surgery at Nkhoma Hospital, our medical partner’s care center. The requested money pays for supplies, medications, and seven nights of hospital stay. She is very much looking forward to living a normal and healthy life again.

She says, “I came here for surgery but am unable to pay for it myself, so thanks to this program I can have good care.”

Ruth is a mother of four and grandmother to four from Malawi. She is a farmer who is also responsible for household chores such as cleaning,...

Read more

Ruth's Timeline

  • October 17, 2018
    PROFILE SUBMITTED

    Ruth was submitted by Angela Quashigah at World Altering Medicine.

  • October 19, 2018
    PROFILE PUBLISHED

    Ruth's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • October 23, 2018
    TREATMENT OCCURRED

    Ruth received treatment at Nkhoma Hospital in Malawi. 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.

  • November 2, 2018
    TREATMENT UPDATE

    Ruth's treatment was successful. Read the update.

  • January 5, 2019
    FULLY FUNDED

    Ruth's treatment was fully funded.

Funded by 27 donors

Funded by 27 donors

Treatment
Hysterectomy
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $650 for Ruth's treatment
Hospital Fees
$373
Medical Staff
$12
Medication
$236
Supplies
$0
Travel
$7
Labs
$22
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

Patients requiring hysterectomies at our medical partner's care center generally have one of three conditions: uterine fibroids, cervical cancer, or chronic bleeding. Women with uterine fibroids may experience chronic pelvic pain. Women with cervical cancer are often symptom-free and are only diagnosed upon screening. Finally, women with chronic bleeding experience atypical and excessive vaginal bleeding.

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

These three conditions may impact the patient's life in different ways. Women with pelvic pain and bleeding may be unable to work or be active. Women who experience bleeding may feel weak, due to the loss of blood and inaccessibility of blood products in Malawi. Women with cervical cancer are at risk of cancer metastasis.

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

Cervical cancer is the top killer of women in Malawi, which has the highest rate of this type of cancer in the world. There are several factors that lead to these high rates, including early sexual initiation, high HIV prevalence, and lack of screening and treatment. Although health facilities nationwide are supposed to provide screenings, many do not. Therefore, women are never screened, and the cancer can progress to an untreatable stage. In addition, women with cervical cancer often experience no symptoms and may not go in for a screening. Women with vaginal bleeding may experience stigmatization. In Malawi, menstruation can be a challenge. It is difficult to keep fabric clean, as there is often little access to sanitary products.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

A hysterectomy is a surgical operation to remove all or part of the uterus. Surgeons perform radical hysterectomies on women with cervical cancer. This is an aggressive surgical approach to combat cancer. Women with fibroids or bleeding may receive alternative treatments before a hysterectomy.

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

For patients with cervical cancer, a hysterectomy is a lifesaving operation. Without treatment, the cancer will continue to spread and ultimately become untreatable. Chemotherapy has not been proven effective in treating cervical cancer, so a hysterectomy is the best option for women. Women with fibroids or bleeding will be able to return to their daily lives without chronic pain and bleeding.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

There are risks associated with any surgical procedure. In this case, there is a risk of damage to the ureters and the tubes that connect the kidney to the bladder, as they are near the reproductive system.

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

There is one public hospital in Malawi's Central Region that provides hysterectomies. Unfortunately, the wait time can be very, very long. Women may not be treated in time or may stop showing up for scheduled surgeries as they continue to be delayed. Other private facilities provide hysterectomies, but at rates that are unaffordable to our patients.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

For patients with cervical cancer, there are no good alternatives. For patients with fibroids, it is possible to remove the fibroid alone. This procedure is often done on young women who are still of childbearing age. Some women with fibroids or bleeding receive hormonal treatment before attempting a hysterectomy. In many cases, less aggressive treatments are tried before the patient receives a hysterectomy.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Mu

Mu lives with her four nieces and nephew in a refugee camp along the Thai/Burma border region. One of her nieces is a medic, the other a teacher, and the two youngest go to school with her nephew. Mu is unemployed and in her free time she enjoys gardening and reading the Bible. In 2019, Mu started to suffer from abdominal pain, back pain, and exhaustion. When she touched her lower abdomen, she could feel a mass. After the International Rescue Committee (IRC) helped her undergo medical investigations at multiple hospitals, she was diagnosed with bilateral endometriosis cysts and was told she has cysts outside of her uterus. Although she needed surgery, she was told she would have to wait because all surgeries had stopped due to the outbreak of COVID-19 in Thailand. In September, she had an ultrasound which showed that she had one new cyst. The doctor said she would need surgery soon but Mu could not go back to Mae Sot Hospital for the next few months because more COVID-19 cases in the refugee camp caused a lockdown. When she was finally able to go to the hospital this month, doctors have scheduled her for surgery to remove her cysts. With Mu unable to pay for the procedure, IRC referred her to our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund for financial assistance to raise $1,500 that is needed for her treatment. "I felt like half of my worries disappeared when I heard that I could have surgery with the support of donors," said Mu. "I have waited so long to receive surgery and my condition is so painful. I would like to say thank you so much to everyone who is helping me."

79% funded

79%funded
$1,188raised
$311to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.