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Success! Mao from Cambodia raised $229 to fund eye surgery.

  • $229 raised, $0 to go
to go
Fully funded
Mao's treatment was fully funded on May 1, 2021.

Photo of Mao post-operation

April 12, 2021

Mao underwent eye surgery and can see well again.

Mao was able to return home after his successful cataract surgery. He was given eye drops to use, which will prevent infection and was given instructions to take it easy for a couple of days while he recovers. Mao can now see clearly, he recognizes the faces of his family, and he is able to go outside by himself. Mao shared that he looks forward to planting crops in his garden and chasing after his grandchildren!

Mao’s wife told us, “Thank you to all who donated to help my husband see again. We are very grateful that we don’t have to worry about him.”

Mao was able to return home after his successful cataract surgery. He was given eye drops to use, which will prevent infection and was given...

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March 15, 2021

Mao is an elderly farmer with one daughter, two sons, and many grandchildren. Mao lives with his wife and their youngest daughter who works as a tailor. Nowadays, Mao does not farm so much anymore due to his age and poor vision. He mostly stays home to help look after his grandchildren.

Five years ago, Mao developed a cataract in his right eye, causing him to experience blurry vision, photophobia, and tearing. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside.

When Mao learned about our medical partner, Children’s Surgical Centre, he traveled for one hour with his son seeking treatment. On March 15th, doctors will perform a small incision cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in his Right eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $229 procedure.

Mao said, “I hope my surgery goes well. When I can see better afterwards, then I want to plant some vegetables around my house that I can sell to earn money for my family.”

Mao is an elderly farmer with one daughter, two sons, and many grandchildren. Mao lives with his wife and their youngest daughter who works ...

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Mao's Timeline

  • March 15, 2021

    Mao was submitted by Sieng Heng at Children's Surgical Centre.

  • March 15, 2021

    Mao received treatment at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre in Cambodia. 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 15, 2021

    Mao's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • April 12, 2021

    Mao's treatment was successful. Read the update.

  • May 1, 2021

    Mao's treatment was fully funded.

Funded by 2 donors

Funded by 2 donors

Cataract - One Eye
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $229 for Mao'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 cataracts experience decreased vision, discomfort, and irritation. Cataracts occur when the lens inside the eye becomes cloudy, causing functional blindness. These changes in the lens commonly occur with increasing age and therefore affect elderly people. Cataracts can also be congenital or traumatic.

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

The decreased vision from cataracts can cause functional blindness. This makes it difficult for the patient to conduct daily activities. Patients often need a family member to help guide and care for them. If the patient is elderly, this often affects a young child in the family. When a grandmother needs help getting around, a young child is often assigned to help with her daily tasks. That child cannot go to school.

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

In many countries in the developing world, surgical services are inadequate. Cataracts remain the leading cause of blindness globally. Even where surgical services are available, barriers to surgery remain, including cost, shortage of human resources, poor infrastructure, and limited awareness about access to available services.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

Cataract surgery is the most common surgery performed worldwide. Surgeons remove the cloudy lens and place a clear lens implant in its place.

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

A patient's vision can improve to 20/20 within one day after the surgery.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

Cataract surgery is highly effective and carries a low risk.

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

Cataract surgery is available in most areas of Cambodia. However, free surgery is not as widely available.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

Some debilitating effects of cataracts can be improved with glasses. When the cataract becomes mature, however, the only definitive treatment is surgical.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.


Pwe is a 56-year-old woman who lives with her husband, her older brother, her daughter and her grandson in a refugee camp in Tak Province, Thailand. Since they came to the refugee camp, Pwe teaches at one of the primary schools and she earns 1,060 baht (approx. 35 USD) per month. She has a resourceful family: Her daughter teaches piano on a keyboard, and she earns around 2,000 baht (approx. 67 USD) per month. Her older brother is a carpenter who earns income when someone commissions a piece of furniture. When he does have work, he will earn around 150 baht (approx. 5 USD) per day. Pwe's grandson is a nursery school student in the refugee camp. Her son-in-law went back to Burma to visit his parents in 2019. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, he has been unable to come back to the refugee camp since then. All together, they work hard to make finances meet their day to day needs. The doctors at our medical partner's care center, Mae Sot General Hospital (MSGH), have diagnosed Pwe with a cataract in her left eye. Currently, Pwe cannot see people’s faces and she can only perceive light out of her left eye. With her right eye, she can see things that are near, but nothing that's far away. She received a pair of eyeglasses from the doctor at MSGH after her first visit, which helps her see better with her right eye but if she does not wear the eyeglasses, she cannot read or teach her students. Fortunately, on February 23rd, doctors will perform a lens replacement surgery, during which they will remove Pwe's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly again and go back to teaching her students without difficulty. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to help fund Pwe's treatment. She said, “Since the vision in my left eye worsened, I feel uncomfortable reading and teaching. Sometimes, I ask my daughter, who also graduated from high school in the refugee camp, to teach in my place as I cannot read or prepare my lesson plans.”

73% funded

$394to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.