Saturday, April 28, 2012

Mi Mulago es su Mulago

Mulago Hospital is the "National Referral Hospital" in Uganda.  It seems that we are getting to know our way around the place much better than we would ever want to.  Mulago is a large campus with multiple buildings and "wards".  This hospital has the best collection of medical specialists in Uganda, and in some of the countries that surround Uganda.  It is by no means fancy or state of the art, but it is where the sickest of the sick go for treatment. 
Jayne noticed this trash can at Mulago.

This is Jayne's hand with the camera looking into the trash can.

We have visited there twice with Tendo, and she will be returning on May 9th to check in for her surgery on May 11th.  We have visited 3 times with Nakiganda.  We are supposed to go check on her today and perhaps do some blood work through Wentz Medical Center.

Jamil, our friend with the eye tumor, is finishing his second week in Mulago ward 1A after having his eye surgery.  We have visited him several times.  He and his uncle Joseph love to go to the canteen and enjoy some soda or juice, and usually a big meal.  Jamil has come to know us better and lights up when the kids walk into his room.  He has been sitting in a room with nothing to do for almost 2 weeks.  Most of the eye ward is one big room with 40 or so beds lined up next to each other.  I guess, because he is a child, they gave him a room off to the side with 2 beds.  This has provided more privacy, but more boredom.  I HAVE A SERIOUS PRAISE REPORT WITH JAMIL!  While we were visiting (Friday), he told us that he had seen some light through his operated eye when they changed his dressing that morning!!  In case you don't know, we have been praying that Jamil would regain sight in the right eye.  He has not been able to see out of it for 3-4 years, because of the tumor.  To make sight more of a miracle, the doctor had to remove his optic nerve (the eye's connection to the brain) to get all of the tumor.  So there is NO anatomical reason for him to see light through that eye.  Just a supernatural reason!  I talked to Dr. Agaba yesterday, he has kept Jamil longer than anticipated because he has a blood collection behind the eye, where the tumor had been.  He is not worried about him, he just doesn't want to send him back out to Palissa until things are more healed.  He might be able to go to Pastor Fred's house in Kampala on Monday and stay there for several more days before going home.  Please keep him in your prayers.  We are still praying that sight restoration occur.  We think that this could cause a groundswell of faith in those that have cared for him in the hospital, in Jamil's family, in Jamil's village, and around the world because of you and I telling everyone we know.

We took Joseph to Mulago on Thursday to meet Dr. Tumweheire Greg.  Dr. TG is an ENT specialist at Mulago.  We got a CT of Joseph's head and sinuses prior to going for this appointment.  It was cool that Dr. TG did not even ask for or look at the CT.  He asked the history, did an exam, and then told us that he thought it was a Burkitt's Lymphoma.  This is a malignancy that is known to be in Africa near the equator.  It is many times related to decreased immunity from chronic malaria or HIV, allowing the Epstein Bar virus (the same one that causes mono) to cause a cancer in the lymph system.  Joseph and his father, Ellya, went home to Mytiana on Thursday night, and then returned on Friday to meet us at Mulago again.  We got Joseph checked in and he will have a biopsy on Monday to confirm the diagnosis.  If it is Burkitt's Lymphoma, we are told that the treatment is chemotherapy.  With chemotherapy, the survival rate is 20%.  I have to admit, 20% is better odds than I was thinking after we got the CT on Wednesday night.  I told Dr. TG, that for Joseph, his odds are either 100% or 0%.  Since we are circling the prayer warrior wagons around him, I think Joseph is going to be a 100% cure!  This process of treatment will be complicated.  We are leaving for a 9 day trip to SW Uganda on Monday, hopefully after the biopsy.  The biopsy can be left for pathology at Mulago, but will take about 3 weeks to get back.  It can be taken to a private pathologist in Kampala and we can get results much quicker.  The medical team, from New York, that originally found Joseph, will try to have someone at Mulago on Monday, but they are flying home on Monday night.  If it is Burkitt's, I think that Joseph will be taken directly to the cancer treatment ward.  He will then have 4 months of chemotherapy.  This will require trips back and forth to Mytiana, and some further stays in Mulago.  Please pray for healing in Joseph and that logistics for his family, without resources, can be accomplished.  Even more so, please pray for Ellya (Joseph's father).  We don't think that he is a Christian.  Jill asked him where he got the strength to take care of 4 kids after his wife died, and he said from his children.  When we left Ellya and Joseph at the hospital yesterday, Joseph was crying because he did not want us to leave. 

I am sure that it is hard for Ellya and Joseph to be in Mulago, as this was the last place that they saw Joseph's mother.

We are going back to visit Jamil and Joseph on Sunday.  Thank you for remembering them in prayer.


1 comment:

  1. Be sure and have the kids do their part and fill up that trash can! Thanks for all the updates on your "starfish". It sounds like you have another action packed week coming up. Stay focused and continue to make an impact. Love you and see you SOON! Mom