The Wana Duma/Milgis Medical Fund has blossomed along with many other aspects of the Wana Duma Children’s Fund. On 27th September 2018, my birthday, we flew from camp 65 kilometres (40 miles) down the lugga (dry river bed) to return to Ngurinit to check on old patients, and meet many new ones. All have severe cases that will require hospitalization, and more often than not, a long stay.
We took a more adventurous route, flying low over rugged hills and landscape as Helen, a camel safari guide was looking for new routes, and campsites for an upcoming safari. It was early morning, beautiful and calm - Africa at its best.
Ater chasing a few gazelles off the runway we made a smooth landing sweeping past all the Momma’s sitting along side the runway with their lovely baskets - they heard we were coming!
They will sit all day in the shade, working on more baskets as we select our purchases. Kenyan’s are a very patient bunch, that is until you put them behind the wheel - then patience goes out the window!
Some diseases we commonly see:
Madura Foot (or Medera - I’ve seen it spelled both ways) continues to be an issue. A cut or wound in the foot (also hands) provides a portal of entry for the organism (fungus). With repeated minor trauma, as in walking many miles daily, which is their lifestyle, the wound isn’t allowed to heal. The disease has a relatively slow, and painful progression and often is at an advanced stage when first diagnosed. There is high rate of recurrence and often leads to amputation to save a life.
Thyroid issues seem to be prevalent also, mostly in younger women:
Ntimiran is a 28 year old mother of 3 small children.
Genital birth defects seem to be more common, or is it that we are more available to assist. - Ltajiri, a three year old boy, whose genitals were not formed had urine leaking from his belly button, was operated on last October. They connected his urethea to his bowels resolving the issue.
Nanyaran, a two year old girl, with either a genital tumor or bladder outside her body.
Lucy, a sixteen year old girl, was born wither bladder outside of her body, resulting in leakage, and being shunned by all in the village. She has had two operation, and more to follow, but is now thriving in school and accepted in her village.
Emmanuel, a fourteen year old boy with kidney issues needs a scan. His mother, Naperu, was limping and after checking, it was clear she had a serious wound on there foot that needed immediate attention.
Ltingwas, an eleven year old boy with a tumor on his right foot respond to treatment in August, but needs follow up medical care. He has come up negative for both TB and Madura foot.
Nasa, a five year old girl with cardio symptoms, needs a better hospital with echocardiogram availability.
Bableto, a two year old boy with severely swollen glands, and swelling joints, has been feverish every night since February.
Seyeyon, a seventy-three year old woman has a huge growth on her side that has been growing for the last 20 plus years!
Helen, hands this all over to Jacob, a young man who takes them all down to Nanyuki or Nairobi, depending on the treatment. He stays with them and follows the progress of each patient, also acting
as in interpreter as most don’t even know Swahili, only Maa, their tribal dialect.
I have to say that seeing hope in all of their eyes was the greatest Birthday present I could ever ask for….