It is with heavy hearts that we have learned first hand about the importance of early medical intervention in treating serious medical conditions like spina bifida, a birth defect where part of the spinal cord is outside the body in a sac. (This condition ranges from little or no disability to full paralysis and inability to use the legs.)
At a mere 2 weeks old, we were introduced to a little boy named Yin Xi (pronounced yin shi). He was brought to Swallows Nest Children's Home in Henan, China, weighing 4 kg (8.8 lbs) and appeared strong. He was a bit fussy and loud, indicating that he was a fighter, a desirable trait in a child with this serious condition.
Yin Xi needed surgery quickly due to the fact that his sac was open and a source of possible infection. As soon as we heard about his condition, The Red Thread Promise partnered with Swallow's Nest to provide this life-changing procedure. We knew that being in a better state of health would be a gift that he would have for the rest of his life and would greatly increase his chances of being adopted.
It was our hope to schedule his surgery about 3 weeks later during which time together we would raise the $5,000 needed for all pre- and post-operative care as well as his hospitalization. Sadly, during this time, the harsh winter took its toll on his tiny fragile body: Yin Xi developed pneumonia and was admitted to the hospital. Following treatment, he was released into the care of Swallows Nest where, under the doctor's direction, they administered his medications and gave him the love and affection needed for his full recovery, necessary before surgery could be performed.
Swallow's Nest reported that he began eating well again but cried a lot and appeared uncomfortable. As we waited for his health to stabilize and continued to raise money for his surgery, he was re-admitted to the ICU and diagnosed with meningitis, an inflammation of the membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord. Eventually, even with the aid of the hospital's treatment, his little body was unable to fight anymore.
At only 2 months of age, Yin Xi passed away while waiting for his life-changing surgery.
His short life has taught us how imperative it is to have the funds available BEFORE a child is identified as a surgical candidate so surgery can be performed immediately. Precious time was lost raising funds that might, just might have saved this boy's life.
We think of Yin Xi every time someone donates toward this project. We honor his memory with every surgery we are able to provide, like Lu Yuan, one of our success stories. Born with the same birth defect, Little ZLY received his surgery early and was able to make a full recovery. He is growing up quickly and is a delight to us all as he waits to be matched with his forever family.
We hope that you will join us in providing medical intervention for the weakest of the weak. Please consider supporting these exceptional children.
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