A rare infection
which started as a sinus complaint has left a rural mother and her family
confused, stressed and traumatised as it has since turned cancerous.
It all started in 2016 when
Vhonani Netshifhefhe (42) of Tshikombani village, outside Louis Trichard,
developed a sinus infection, which within few months developed into a tumour and
later turned cancerous.
Traumatised as a family
The married mother of three
children has been in and out of the hospitals in the province since then,
trying desperately to get the help she needs to reclaim her life.
The condition has left
Netshifhefhe completely helpless and unable to take care of her herself and her
children. As a result of the condition
her face is now completely deformed.
Her concerned husband, Ralph
Rabada said, “We are traumatised as a family because it seems like there is
nothing we can do to help my beloved wife. There is nothing which the hospitals are helping her
with, and she is in constant pain. We have been to various hospitals in the
province but it seems like no one knows what needs to be done to help my wife.”
Netshifhefhe’s face has
completely deformed to the extent that people who last saw her more than two
years ago can hardly recognise her now. She travels to Polokwane Provincial
Hospital twice a month for chemotherapy, which costs the family a lot as they
have to travel with her using public transport. Tests have confirmed that the
cancer has already spread to her head. Rabada, who is self-employed, said it is
hard for him to take care of their children on his own as he spends a lot of
time at work.
No money for specialists
“The situation is negatively
affecting us as a family because even our children do not understand what it is
happening to their mom. Her face changes each day. At the hospitals we have
been, her sickness has been diagnosed. But it seems like they do not have any
medication to help her. They keep on promising that she will be helped but her
condition is getting worse each day”, said Rabada.
Netshifhefhe was supposed to
have been operated on last year, but her date was postponed and she is still
waiting for a new date to be confirmed.
“We have lost hope in the
public health care but pity we do not have any means to take her to the
specialists in the private hospitals.”
The spokesperson for the MEC of Health, Thabiso Teffo said that the department
will look into how they can help Netshifhefhe access the treatment she desperately
"We will work closely with our district office to see how we can help her
and the family", said Teffo. – Health-e News.
Image credit: Health-e News