LEPRA helps Rehana to overcome TB meningitis
Four-year-old Rehana lives in the slums of Ashoka Garden, Bhopal. She has TB, a deadly disease that kills 250,000 children a year.
LEPRA Health in Action works with those most vulnerable and at high risk of disease. Our ‘Health for All’ programme includes the districts of Bhopal; when Rehana’s grandmother attended one of LEPRA’s health talks in the slum where the family live, it gave her the confidence to come forward for help.
She told the outreach worker that she was extremely worried about Rehana’s health. The fear of losing her, once so full of life and love, was just too painful to bear. This led to a chain of events that would save Rehana’s life.
LEPRA was there at every step,
- Starting the LEPRA-trained health worker who identified Rehana’s symptoms and referred her for diagnosis.
- The diagnosis of tubercular (TB) meningitis followed.
- TB meningitis occurs when TB bacteria invade the membranes and fluid surrounding the brain and spinal cord. A life-threatening disease when left untreated.
- Rehana’s were told that TB was curable with Directly Observed Treatment short-course (DOTS), and this free medicine would be available during her treatment.
- Rehana was referred to a health centre under our project for treatment. A check up two months later revealed that Rehana’s weight had increased.
- A follow-up appointment after the fourth month of treatment found she was getting stronger slowly.
- LEPRA-trained health workers counselled and guided her family to ensure her treatment was followed to the end.
Rehana is now cured of TB and her overall health has improved considerably. She is starting to play and talk much more. She told her grandmother that she would like a pen for writing. Just like the doctor.
Rehana’s story is just one example of the effectiveness of LEPRA’s approach to spread health information. One person visiting a health talk led to the cure of another.
You can transform lives by helping LEPRA to protect people living in urban slums.
In 2009 I rode alone from Lands’ End in to John O’Groats to raise funds for LEPRA.
Cyclist for LEPRA