Esther Abamurungi (now 11-months-old) was born with a complication known as gastroschisis where the baby’s intestines are outside of the body, exiting through a hole next to the belly button. A day after she was born, surgery was carried out to close the hole.
Fortunately, doctors at Platinum Hospital were able to close the opening. This cost the couple about Shs10m.
While at home, the baby developed complications. She couldn’t feed well, would get tired easily and would suffer from infections all the time. This went on for long.
Phionah Kyobutungi, Abamurungi’s mother says her child was not developing like other children her age.
“She was so thin despite efforts to feed her, she suffered congestion, poor breathing and constant infections. She would also get constipation. One day, she was constipated for five days,” Kyobutungi reveals.
It was then that Abamurungi’s parents decided to take her back to where the doctor recommended an abdominal scan. This cost them Shs65, 000.
“The abdominal scan was normal showing that the close up surgery was successful. We were then told to do an ultrasound of the heart (Echo) which cost us Shs 150,000. This was when it was discovered that there were two large holes on the heart,” Moses Andida , Abamurungi’s father narrates.
Abamurungi was then referred to Uganda Heart Institute and a second Echo test revealed the same. A cardiologist explained that these holes cause oxygenated and de-oxygenated blood to mix and by the time the blood gets to the lungs, it is overloaded.
Andinda says the doctors told them that their baby needs open heart surgery as soon as possible to close the holes or the baby would not develop, could develop pneumonia or even suffer a heart shut down.
Dr Sreesha Shankar Maiya a consultant cardiologist at Narayana Hospital says, “This patient is high risk for surgery and expected be under the doctors’ supervision for about six weeks in case of complications.”
Call for help
The family needs $30,000 (Shs 111m) for their child’s treatment which they have failed to raise yet the child is expected at the hospital by the first week of December. They are therefore inviting wellwishers to join them for a fundraising car wash on November 23, at Panamera Bar in Kololo opposite Kampala Parents School starting at 9am to 6pm.
To support the family, send mobile money to 0784321824/0704720767 (Moses Andinda) or 0700241998 (Phionah Kyobutungi) or to DFCU Bank 01011067743502 account name- Esther Abamurungi.