It was not a cold, it was pneumoniaNandakumar (Thejas’s father) is a driver, while Aruna cares for the house. Thejas is their firstborn son. His birth made the couple extremely happy, especially after years of grief. Just before Nandakumar’s wedding a few years ago, his brother met with an accident that took his life. The incident put off the wedding plans, and treatment to save his brother bled the family dry. After all this time, Nandakumar could move on from the loss, pay off all debt and reunite with his fiancé. They believed the worst was behind them until Thejas began wheezing.
“We thought it was just a cold, and even the doctor prescribed medicines for an infection. Suddenly, he was suffocating. Wheezing with every breath, we saw that our baby was not alright and rushed him to an ER. They gave an injection and it seemed like he was getting better for the first 2 days, but then our hearts stopped.”
From ER to the ICU, now Thejas needs an artificial lung machineThejas seemed to have contracted pneumonia. His body was getting very little oxygen and his lungs were filling up with fluid. In an effort to save his life, the doctor put him on a ventilator. However, his condition deteriorated, and he needed to be moved from Pondicherry to Apollo Chennai.
“When we arrived, my nephew was barely clinging on to his life. The doctor said he needed ECMO to keep his heart and lungs alive. ECMO is an expensive treatment and at the time there was nothing else we could do to save him. We had to consent, and slowly his condition is stabilizing.”
These parents are worried about their baby’s lifeAruna’s brother, Senthil, is with the family through this difficult time. The parents have not been able to speak ever since their son was snatched from their arms and admitted to the NICU. Heart-broken, they have been weeping all day, and deep in grief. As a driver, Nandakumar earns just Rs. 7000/month. He was able to gather just Rs. 60,000 for the treatment with limited time, and now with costs going up to Rs. 7 lakhs a week, Nandakumar is afraid he would not be able to save his son.
“They have both shut off their phones. They stare at the baby all day long. He is scared that even after all this effort, he will only get to hold a dead child in his arms. It will kill him. We are all sending messages, trying to get help. I just took off my ring and pawned it to clear some bills. We have paid over Rs. 4 Lakhs. I hope we can somehow source Rs. 20 lakhs until Thejas comes home safe, if not we will lose him.”
How can you help?Thejas remains on ECMO. The machine is breathing for him while his lungs recover. His family needs your help to complete this treatment that is keeping him alive.
Your contribution can help save this 5-month-old’s life.
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 organizer or the medical team.
Click here to contribute to Thejas or for more details on this campaign.