In the blistering heat of Telangana, Naseem and Mastan carried their wailing 3-month-old baby to the hospital, worrying all the way that something was gravely wrong with him. “He threw up the entire way, and wouldn’t stop crying. He was in so much pain and all I could do was hold him tight as he tried to wriggle away from me because of the discomfort,” says Mastan recalling the fateful day their firstborn was diagnosed with a dangerous liver disease. Ever since then baby Umar’s (1) condition is only worsening.
He hasn’t said his first words or taken his first step yet, and all he does is cry all night, twisting and turning in pain, while his parents try their best to pacify him. He can eat or drink nothing but milk, which he instantly vomits and is in unbearable pain because of his swollen stomach. Baby Umar can only be free from the misery with an urgent liver transplant.
Baby Umar hasn’t even said his first words yet and his parents live in the fear of losing him
Baby Umar turned 1 in July, but there was no celebration or joy. There were no happy giggles or balloons. The parents had nothing to celebrate, only a grey cloud of worry looming over them about their baby's life. Baby Umar has biliary atresia a disease of the liver and bile duct. Bile helps to digest fat and carry waste products from the liver to the intestines for excretion. But when a baby has biliary atresia, the bile flow from the liver is blocked which causes it to be trapped in the liver, causing damage and eventually, liver failure.
Baby Umar has been taking medicines for his liver disease ever since the diagnosis, but in the past two months, his condition has deteriorated considerably.
“We thought he was getting better with medicines, but one day he started throwing up and having loose motions. He has stopped eating altogether. Every time my wife and I try to feed him, it’s as if he’s scared to eat so he keeps pushing our hands aside. He can’t talk yet, so all he does is point towards the door asking us to take the food away. He even fell from the bed accidentally and fractured his right hand last month, it has only added to his discomfort.”
Despite working for longer hours to save money, his father can’t afford the life-saving treatmentMastan works as a lab assistant and now works extra hours to try and earn even a little more money to save for his son’s liver transplant that will cost him 18 lakhs.
Naseem stays with Umar and their 1-month-old baby girl at home all day, trying her best to take care of him and ease his pain. The parents are desperately trying to afford his treatment, but after borrowing 7 lakhs from relatives, they’re at a dead end.
“My father is a farmer and did whatever he could to help me afford Umar's medicines so far, but when we found out that he needs 18 lakhs for the transplant, we were shocked. But I didn’t think of giving up even once. I knew I had to do everything to save my son. I want to see him smile, I want him to grow to be healthy and happy.”
How You Can Help
All little Umar does is cry day and night out of pain. The only way he will survive his failing liver is with an urgent liver transplant. However, his parents have nothing left to save him. Mastan's meager income isn't enough to afford the surgery that will cost them 18 lakhs. The desperate parents long to see their baby survive this terrible disease.