Meet another patient

Watsi logo blueWatsi

Success! Thomas from Kenya raised $1,151 to fund spinal surgery to prevent future health complications.

Thomas
100%
  • $1,151 raised, $0 to go
$1,151
raised
$0
to go
Fully funded
Thomas's treatment was fully funded on January 22, 2023.
August 29, 2022

Thomas is a sweet three-week-old baby from Kenya. He is the youngest in a family of four children. His father works as a luggage carrier, and his mother does laundry and other house chores for people to help provide for their family.

Thomas was born at a hospital near their home. At birth, he was diagnosed with spina bifida, as well as clubfoot. Spina bifida is a type of neural tube condition in which the spine does not properly close around the spinal cord. Without treatment, Thomas is at risk of lower-limb paralysis, infection of the exposed nervous tissue, development of tethered cord syndrome, and possible developmental delays.

Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,151 to cover the cost of Thomas’s spina bifida closure surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on August 31st. This procedure will hopefully spare Thomas from the risks associated with his condition, instead allowing him to grow and develop along a healthy trajectory.

Thomas’s father says, “Currently, we are very stressed because of our child’s condition. We are requesting for any help to see him become well.”

Thomas is a sweet three-week-old baby from Kenya. He is the youngest in a family of four children. His father works as a luggage carrier, an...

Read more

Thomas's Timeline

  • August 29, 2022
    PROFILE SUBMITTED

    Thomas was submitted by Ruth Kanyeria, SAFE Program Coordinator at African Mission Healthcare.

  • August 29, 2022
    PROFILE PUBLISHED

    Thomas's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • September 1, 2022
    TREATMENT SCHEDULED

    Thomas was scheduled to receive treatment at BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital (BKKH) in Kenya. 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.

  • January 22, 2023
    FULLY FUNDED

    Thomas's treatment was fully funded.

  • TODAY
    AWAITING UPDATE

    Awaiting Thomas's treatment update from African Mission Healthcare.

Funded by 25 donors

Funded by 25 donors

Treatment
Spina Bifida Closure
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $1,151 for Thomas's treatment
Hospital Fees
$889
Medical Staff
$0
Medication
$82
Supplies
$0
Labs
$126
Other
$54
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

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

The patient has a mass or lesion on the back that leaks cerebral spinal fluid, which puts him or her at risk of infection.

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

Spina bifida can cause incontinence, bladder and kidney damage, and paralysis and numbness in the lower limbs, bladder, and sphincter. It can also lead to hydrocephalus as a result of disturbance to the fluid in the brain. Hydrocephalus can lead to cognitive dysfunction, blindness, and death.

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

Spina bifida is more common in developing countries due to improper and inadequate nutrition. Foods containing folic acid are scarce, and food is not fortified. In Kenya, however, the Ministry of Health has recently started a program to give expectant mothers folic acid for free at government facilities.

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

What does the treatment process look like?

After surgery, the patient's hospital stay ranges from two days to three weeks. The length of stay depends on the healing rate of the wound and will be extended if the patient also undergoes a shunt insertion to treat hydrocephalus. However, shunt insertions are usually performed about one month after this surgery. The patient is continually monitored. If the wound heals and the patient is in a neurologically stable condition, the surgery is considered successful.

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

Surgery performed within the first days of a child’s life prevents infection and saves the spine and brain from further damage. Early surgery also minimizes the risk of paralysis. Later treatment may save the child's life and prevent further damage.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

This surgery is moderately risky, and complications depend on the severity of the case.

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

There are few quality care centers in the region. Hospitals lack adequate resources and expertise to treat this condition. With about one neurosurgeon per 10,000,000 people in East Africa, initial treatment for spina bifida is often unavailable.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

Surgery is the primary option for most types of spina bifida.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Kim

Kim is a 43-year-old married father of a 15-year-old son. While his family has a rice farm and tends farm animals to sell at the market, Kim also works in the city in construction, to add to the financial support for his family. When he is home, he enjoys meeting with his friends, and watching boxing on TV. In May, Kim was in a motor collision with another motorbike, badly injuring his left shoulder and forearm. He went to the local hospital, where he underwent surgery, and had hardware placed that would hold the fractured bones in his arm together. Despite the surgery, his forearm continues to be very painful, and he experiences tingling in his fingers, although he can't move them. In addition to these symptoms, his fingers are bent into a claw like position, because of damage to a major nerve that controls the muscles in his hand and arm. His arm is weak, and he cannot work with his left hand, so he is unable to pursue jobs in construction. The loss in pay from his construction work has made it difficult for his family financially, and Kim is worried about their future. Fortunately, our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is here to help Kim access the care that he needs. Children's Surgical Centre is requesting your help to fund a $572 procedure, which is scheduled for September 12th. During this surgery, physicians at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre will perform a nerve exploration and a bone graft, to complete the repair of Kim's arm, enabling him to return to his construction work, and to a life without pain. Kim shared: "After surgery, I hope my arm will have no more pain, I will heal soon, and will be able to work with my hand for my family again."

12% funded

12%funded
$73raised
$499to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.

Kim

Kim is a 43-year-old married father of a 15-year-old son. While his family has a rice farm and tends farm animals to sell at the market, Kim also works in the city in construction, to add to the financial support for his family. When he is home, he enjoys meeting with his friends, and watching boxing on TV. In May, Kim was in a motor collision with another motorbike, badly injuring his left shoulder and forearm. He went to the local hospital, where he underwent surgery, and had hardware placed that would hold the fractured bones in his arm together. Despite the surgery, his forearm continues to be very painful, and he experiences tingling in his fingers, although he can't move them. In addition to these symptoms, his fingers are bent into a claw like position, because of damage to a major nerve that controls the muscles in his hand and arm. His arm is weak, and he cannot work with his left hand, so he is unable to pursue jobs in construction. The loss in pay from his construction work has made it difficult for his family financially, and Kim is worried about their future. Fortunately, our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is here to help Kim access the care that he needs. Children's Surgical Centre is requesting your help to fund a $572 procedure, which is scheduled for September 12th. During this surgery, physicians at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre will perform a nerve exploration and a bone graft, to complete the repair of Kim's arm, enabling him to return to his construction work, and to a life without pain. Kim shared: "After surgery, I hope my arm will have no more pain, I will heal soon, and will be able to work with my hand for my family again."

12% funded

12%funded
$73raised
$499to go