Monday, May 7, 2012


Eucharia is a 45 year old lady I have seen on numerous occasions the last year.  She has an engaging smile and a unassuming attitude.  Childhood Rheumatic Fever damaged her heart valves.  As her valves worsened with age, she developed Congestive Heart Failure which caused her to be admitted to the hospital several times the last year.  She was referred to the Cardiac Center in Shisong, one of the few hospitals in Sub-Saharan Africa offering cardiac surgery.  Unfortunately the $7000 price tag for the recommended surgery to repair her heart valves was not feasible for her family.  She was having difficulty paying for her daily medications so she would skip her medications some days trying trying to make them last longer.  This strategy only worsened her condition.  Last month I was able to use Donor money to purchase her medications.  Despite her medications, her heart continued to worsen and she was admitted last week again.  Her weakened heart could not pump her blood well enough and fluid backed up in her lungs, abdomen and legs.  I drained fluid from her chest and abdomen trying to give her lungs more room to expand.  Despite our efforts and her strong will to live, her heart finally gave out yesterday morning.  Keep Eucharia and her family in your prayers this week.

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