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Success! Paw from Thailand raised $1,500 to fund kidney surgery.

  • $1,500 raised, $0 to go
to go
Fully funded
Paw's treatment was fully funded on November 4, 2022.
October 26, 2022

Paw is a 46-year-old woman who lives with her husband, son, and daughter in the refugee camp in Mae Hong Son Province. Originally from the conflict area of Karen State, Burma, she and her family fled to the refugee camp due to conflict in their area. Today, her daughter goes to school in the camp, while her son stays home because he has an intellectual disability. In her free time, Paw enjoys gardening. Paw and her husband also raise chickens and grow vegetables to supplement their family’s diet. Every month, their household receives 1,460 baht (approx. $49) on a cash card from an organization called The Border Consortium to support their day-to-day needs. Sometimes, Paw also receives pocket money from her other son, who works as a security guard in the refugee camp and lives with his wife and children. This amount is not enough to cover their daily needs, so they often have to purchase food on credit, which they pay back at the end of the month. They receive free basic health care at the hospital in the refugee camp, provided by Malteser International (MI) Thailand, but surgery there is not available.

In early 2020, Paw started to experience pain in her lower abdomen. She also experienced severe back pain, dizziness and nausea when she ate. She went to the hospital in the refugee camp, where she was treated for a urinary tract infection (UTI). When the UTI kept returning, MI staff referred her to Mae Sariang Hospital for further treatment. Paw went to that hospital in February 2020, where she was diagnosed with a stone in her right kidney and acute pyelonephritis, a bacterial infection causing inflammation of the kidneys. She was admitted for five days and received treatment for the infection. Afterwards, she was referred to Chiang Mai Hospital (CMH) for further treatment for the kidney stone.

In July 2020, MI staff brought Paw to CMH, where she received various x-rays. Doctors confirmed her diagnosis, but also diagnosed her with severe hydronephrosis, or a buildup of urine, in her right kidney. She received a catheter to drain urine from her kidney, and was brought back to CMH every three months to change the catheter. The doctor also scheduled Paw to have the stone removed from her right kidney on October 31st. Our partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), is asking for financial assistance to help Paw pay for this surgery.

Currently, Paw experiences pain and has difficulty sleeping. Traveling to the hospital regularly is also difficult for her family. Paw thinks a lot about her future and shared: “In the future I want to buy and raise a pig and more chickens. I do not want to be resettled in another country because I love living near my siblings. If they [my siblings] are resettled, I might go with them.”

Paw is a 46-year-old woman who lives with her husband, son, and daughter in the refugee camp in Mae Hong Son Province. Originally from the c...

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Paw's Timeline

  • October 26, 2022

    Paw was submitted by Bue Wah Say, Project Officer at Burma Children Medical Fund.

  • October 31, 2022

    Paw was scheduled to receive treatment at Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital in Thailand. 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 3, 2022

    Paw's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • November 4, 2022

    Paw's treatment was fully funded.


    Awaiting Paw's treatment update from Burma Children Medical Fund.

Funded by 16 donors

Funded by 16 donors

Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $3,648 for Paw's treatment
Subsidies fund $2,148 and Watsi raises the remaining $1,500
Hospital Fees
Medical Staff
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

The symptoms include severe pain in the groin and/or side, blood and/or pus in the urine, vomiting and nausea, reduced amount of urine excreted, burning sensation during urination. Some patient experiences back pain, a persistent urge to urinate, fever and chills if there is an infection.

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

Because of the lower back pain, patients cannot sleep or eat well. They feel discomfort because of frequent urination. They are unable to work because of frequent fevers, chills, and pain. Often their family members have to take time away from work to care for them which affects their financial situation.

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

Many patients cannot afford to go to a hospital and instead try to treat themselves with traditional medicine, which is not effective and can even worsen the patients' condition.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

The patient will receive a urine test and an ultrasound first. If their diagnosis is confirmed, they will receive a date for surgery. A scope is inserted through a small incision in your back to remove the kidney stones. The patient usually spends 4-5 days in the hospital.

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

The patient will no longer experience back pain or a burning sensation when they urinate. They will be able to sleep and eat well. The family can return to work and generating income.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

The most common side effects are bleeding, infection, injuries to the kidney or other organs and incomplete stone removal.

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

Many patients live in remote areas and cannot access treatment because it is only available in larger cities.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

Alternative treatment options include lithotripsy to break up a large stone into smaller pieces, surgical removal of the kidney stones, and the removal a kidney if there are multiple stones in the kidney. If none of the procedures are done, patients will continue to live with a kidney stone which will cause them to be in pain and ultimately can lead to kidney failure.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.