A sick child
On Saturday, March 10th, we received word that Melvin was feeling unwell. It was apparent that she would need to see a doctor, so arrangements were made for her to visit the hospital.
It was suspected that Melvin may have contracted malaria so it was vital to obtain a prompt diagnosis. She was also complaining of a painful skin rash and clearly needed treatment.
At the hospital
After a series of tests, a diagnosis of malaria was confirmed. In addition, her skin was infected and would require antibiotics. Thankfully, Chaffinch was able to pay the necessary costs for the doctor, tests, and medication.
Why has malaria struck now?
It is rainy season in Kenya and Nairobi has seen a huge amount of rainfall. In Kibera, this means water everywhere with overflowing drainage channels, open sewers, and water collecting in any depression.
It’s when this water becomes stagnant (usually large puddles that have nowhere to drain) that the problem begins. The water becomes a breeding ground for mosquitos. The larvae develop within a few days, escaping their aquatic environment before it dries out.
More mosquitos = more mosquito bites = higher risk of contracting malaria from an infected mosquito.
Symptoms of malaria
- Shaking chills
- High fever
Symptoms usually begin within a few weeks of being bitten by an infected mosquito.
Dangers of malaria
- Cerebral malaria. If parasite-filled blood cells block small blood vessels to the brain (cerebral malaria), swelling of the brain or brain damage may occur. Cerebral malaria may cause coma.
- Breathing problems. Accumulated fluid in the lungs (pulmonary edema) can make it difficult to breathe.
- Organ failure. Malaria can cause kidneys or liver to fail, or the spleen to rupture. Any of these conditions can be life-threatening.
- Anemia. Malaria damages red blood cells, which can result in anemia.
Sponsored children, like Melvin, are guaranteed all reasonable medical costs. This includes treatment for diseases like malaria, or cholera as suffered by two of our boys last year.
Whilst we will always attempt to cover medical expenses for any child at Future Stars, this may not always be possible.
So, please consider sponsoring one of the children and helping them to remain healthy and happy.