“He was always the thinnest boy in his class. I gave him nutritious food every day, and never let him eat junk food. He used to get angry and say ‘Amma when I grow up, I’ll eat only ice cream’ but I just wanted him to be healthy. My husband is disabled by polio, and I was worried that something terrible would happen to our son too. For a long time, I thought it was the food I was cooking. Despite everything I did, he only got worse. In the past few months his health deteriorated so much that he’s spent many sleepless nights struggling to breathe. I tell him he’ll be fine soon, but I have only two days left to save my son from his failing heart.” – Manjamma, Shivakumar’s mother
With every passing minute, he was getting weaker, but his severe heart disease wasn’t diagnosed for yearsAfter years of running from one doctor to another, desperately begging for answers about their child’s deteriorating health, Manjamma and Ramesh often returned home with no answers and no hope.
Little Shivakumar has been suffering from a heart disease ever since he was a baby, but his condition was diagnosed only last week.
“He was only getting worse with time. He couldn’t eat or drink anything. His hands and legs were swelling up, and he would often get breathless. There were times when I found him sitting quietly in one corner of the house, trying to get his breath back to normal. He’s become so weak that even playing for a few minutes, exhausts him. He doesn’t get up from his bed until the next day. For a long time, no one was able to tell us what was wrong with him. It was the most difficult sight watching him suffer and not knowing what was killing him or what we could do to help.”
Now, Shivakumar has just two days left to get a surgery that will save his lifeShivakumar has a hole in his heart which causes oxygen-rich blood to get pumped back to the lungs instead of the rest of the body. Shivakumar has been living with this heart disease for years and it’s been slowly killing him. Now, he can’t go on any further without an urgent heart surgery. He needs the surgery in two days, but his poor parents have nothing to save him.
With her husband disabled due to polio, Manjamma is doing all she can to save her son - but it's not enough
Manjamma and Ramesh have tried to do their best for their children, but they’ve had several hurdles to overcome. Ramesh struggles to walk and move his hands because of polio and hasn’t been able to work in years. Manjamma has spent the last few years taking care of her husband and her sickly child. Ramesh often breaks down thinking about their plight. He wishes there was something he could to save his son, but when he can barely even hold a glass of water by himself, working is near to impossible.
“I’m a housewife and my husband can’t work because of his disability. Last week Shivakumar had to get injections for five days, and we couldn’t even afford one day’s stay in the hospital. My mother-in-law has helped us with his tests and treatment so far. But injections and medicines aren’t enough to save him any longer. He needs the surgery to finally be free from this disease.”
How You Can HelpShivakumar has two days to get a surgery that will save him from the large hole in his heart. Without this, he’s running out of time and risks complete heart failure.
When Shivakumar asks his mother when he’ll be able to play with his neighbourhood friends again, she has no answer. Manjamma knows she might never get to take her son back home if he doesn’t get the surgery in time. She is struggling to afford his treatment with no savings and no income, and desperately needs your help. This 7-year-old can be saved if he has the surgery in two days.