Rithvika is only 10-months-old but her short life has been very painful so far. She doesn't know why, but her stomach hurts and burns all the time. Her liver is completely damaged and she needs an urgent liver transplant to find some relief from her pain.
Baby Rithvika's stomach hurts so much she cannot be hugged
“Every night she cries herself to sleep and I cry along with her. When your small baby is in so much pain, what else can you do? Some nights - no one at home gets any sleep. It is very hard for us to see our daughter bear so much suffering,” says Lalitha, Rithvika's mother.
Lalitha was young and full of dreams. She remembers being a hopeful, optimistic person before the pregnancy. But all the fight has gone out of her in the face of her daughter's never-ending pain. She wants to embrace her baby, but even that hurts her so much she shrieks.
Rithvika's stomach is hard and swollen because of the damage caused to her liver. Any pressure on the stomach hurts her, so her parents make sure the carry her from the side so she feels as less pain as possible when going from one place to another.
Rithvika is in great pain because her liver is completely damaged
Unlike other children her age, Rithvika has learnt no new words. She has not learnt to sit up on her own or to call her parents. She is hindered by her stomach and her body's inability to absorb nutrition. She is 10 months old and weight under 5 kgs.
Rithvika's parents' poverty hinders them saving her
Satish works as a driver in Hyderabad and earns Rs 9,000 per month. He is the only earning member of the family taking care of not only his wife and child but also his aged parents and younger brother. To save his first and only child, he has borrowed heavily from local moneylenders.
Satish and Lalitha with Rithvika
Rithvika's treatment began when she was just 3-months-old. She was passing white stool and her parents decided to get this checked. “The doctor asked us to do a MRI scan and told her her gall bladder was malfunctioning. She needed an immediate operation,” Satish says.
Shortly after the operation, she fell sick – unable to eat. The bile from her liver was not getting stored in the bladder. It was eating away at her liver. In just two months, her liver was completely damaged and she had to take medications to live.
Rithvika in one of her rare, peaceful moments
How you can help
A liver transplant will cost Rs 16 lakhs. It is an amount that Satish with his low salary cannot afford. He has already spent all his savings and paid medical bills of over Rs 5 lakhs so far. But all thing if his daughter does not get the liver transplant that will save her life.
Help these parents save their only child and give her the treatment that will end her pain.
The specifics of this case have been verified by the medical team at the concerned hospital. For any clarification on the treatment or associated costs, contact the campaign organiser or the medical team.
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