For almost two years, 39-year-old Reem Mehmood Ahmed had been suffering from the worst bouts of weakness and a general feeling of lethargy. “I always felt weak and stopped doing my ‘normal’ routines. Very soon I began vomiting and my vision became blurry. I thought it was because I hadn’t eaten and was very tired. I was very wrong,” says Reem. Hoping that these symptoms would just vanish, Reem simply chooses to ignore these symptoms.
Over the course of a few months, her symptoms gradually got much worse, until one day Reem’s family decided to take her to the doctor. “The doctor thought it was a stomach virus and he gave me medicine and injections that I was to take daily. Meanwhile, my family saw that I was as pale as snow. Worried sick, my family decided to take me to a Nephrologist (kidney doctor), to check to see what was going on with me”, recounts Reem.
That is when Reem learned that she had polycystic kidney disease (PKD), a genetic condition that causes cysts to form on the kidneys until the kidneys stop functioning. “The diagnosis was a surprise because no one in my family had PKD,” recalls Reem. While waiting for the appropriate treatment back home, Reem began to experience the first signs of PKD. “My enlarged kidneys caused my abdomen to extend so much that I had trouble bending at the waist. I would have to hold my breath and bend whenever I would have to reach the ground,” she recalls.
Thinking that transplant was her only option, her family began researching unique treatments for polycystic kidney disease. This is when they heard of Vaidam from one of their relatives. They were not sure about Vaidam so they decided to visit Vaidam's office in Khartoum (in Alanaser Complex). They were greeted by Shammim and after reading stories of people traveling from Sudan to India to receive treatment, they decided to go with Vaidam. “Geography was not a factor for them – they wanted the best treatment wherever that happened to be”, says Shammim. Shammin shared the query with Vaidam Case Manager in India. Shortly enough, they were contacted by Vaidam Case Manager, Ibrahim Usmani. “After speaking to Ibrahim and Shammim, we felt so relieved, it was like we were already in India. Ibrahim assured us that in case we needed any help, he would assist us in every way possible. He provided us with the list of 5 best kidney treatment hospitals in India and we decided to go with Global Hospital." Reem’s family sent her medical reports to Ibrahim for medical analysis, and meanwhile, Ibrahim made the necessary appointments at Global Hospital Bangalore.
Vaidam Case Manager, Ibrahim Usmani: “Vaidam helps patients by offering them a wide range of hospitals – patients make their choice based on their health requirements, budgets, food, and other preferences. Once they finalize which hospital they want to go with, I make the necessary appointment with the resident specialist.”
Arriving in Bangalore on July 8th, Reem gets received by a Vaidam patient relation executive at the airport; she is subsequently dropped to her guest house where she would stay for the next few days before her appointment. “I felt very nervous to meet the doctor; I wasn’t sure of what the outcome was going to be.” Reem made her way to Global Hospital for her appointment with Dr. Anil Kumar BT. During her first consultation, Dr. Kumar ordered multiple tests including an ultrasound. The ultrasound revealed cysts that were already enlarging her kidneys. After analyzing her results, Dr. Kumar decided to go ahead with a procedure called Laparoscopic Decortication. “Medical science has moved leaps and bounds with various advancements like minimally invasive surgery to remove kidney cysts,” says Dr. Kumar, “what would have only been possible with a kidney transplant, no longer requires such complicated surgery.”
Dr. Kumar- one of the best kidney specialists in India, performed the surgery by inserting a laparoscopic camera through an incision. This would give him a magnified view of the kidney, facilitating careful dissection of the cyst away from surrounding structures. Twenty minutes after the procedure began, Dr. Kumar was able to remove all of Reem’s cysts successfully. Considering that Laparoscopic Decortication is a minimally invasive procedure, this would mean that Reem would have a shorter hospital stay, less postoperative pain and a quicker return to full activities. Reem would have to return to the hospital for her final consultation in two days. After her final meeting with Dr. Kumar who ordered a final ultrasound to examine any recurrences; Reem was discharged from the hospital with a clean bill of health.
On the 26th of July, Reem made her way back to her home country of Sudan. “I am so glad that I can now return home completely healthy,” says Reem, “This is all thanks to Dr. Kumar and his team at Global Hospital and a special thank to Vaidam who helped make this possible”. Over the next few months, Reem will undergo follow-up appointments over the phone with Dr. Kumar and his team to ensure that the surgery has stayed its course.
Vaidam would like to wish Reem a healthy and fulfilling life ahead.