Dad exhausts life savings for treatment of daughter suffering from thalassemia; NGOs to step in now

Father helpless after spending RM800,000 on daughter's illness

A baby suffering from Thalassemia
Two-year-old Rimo Das, a Thalassemia patient, drinks milk on his mother's lap inside the office of a non-government organisation (NGO) in the eastern Indian city of Kolkata July 15, 2008 Parth Sanyal/ Reuters

Lim Kun Song, a farmer, has already spent RM800,000 of his savings for the treatment of his 10-year-old daughter suffering from thalassemia. Even then he needs funds urgently to continue her treatment in Taiwan.

His daughter Wan Yue is admitted at the Taipei Chang Gung Memorial Hospital. On January 13, the girl suffered convulsions and doctors are yet to identify the main cause of the same. Lim said during a press conference that the doctors feel there lies a problem in her brain. The press conference was held by Pertubuhan Kebajikan Amal Shan Xin Malaysia founder Datuk Seri I.T. Wong.

"I've already spent all my savings for her treatment and I'm appealing to the people to help my daughter," said Lim.

Wan Yue was first diagnosed with thalassemia at the age of two. In the last three years, her condition has deteriorated. Lim stated that she had fever that did not subside and even after taking her to the Raja Permaisuri Bainun Hospital, the main problem could not be diagnosed. A hematologist in Kuala Lumpur diagnosed her issue.

When Wan Yue was seven, her body parts started swelling and according to doctors, this happens to be a rare type of thalassemia. She has had two bone marrow transplants in Taipei. Datuk Seri I.T. Wong consoled Wan Yue's family and declared that along with two NGOs - My Love Charity and Pertubuhan Kebajikan Kasih Sayang, he will be raising fund for this little one and each person will be donating RM100,000.

Thalassemia is an inherited blood disorder which produces an abnormal form of hemoglobin in the body. Red blood cells are constantly destroyed and this leads to anemia. According to WHO it is a monogenic disease that results from modifications in a single gene that occur in all cells.

Scientists claim that over 10,000 human diseases are monogenic in nature. In case of thalassemia, errors in the gene responsible for the production of red blood cells trigger the disorder. Early diagnosis and treatment of thalassemia can prove effective in combating the disease.