One month later, Nancy Lamwaka registers some “Improvement”
Nancy was hopeless, tied for over 13hours on a tree trunk and lived an inhuman life as Echwalu Photography reported then (Nodding Victim: Tormented 12-year-old girl lives like pigs)
Her condition was not helped with the fact that Uganda had no definite answers to her cause. And so did the Centre for Disease Control (CDC) team in Atlanta, which is possibly, the world’s center of medical research grappled with samples in their labs hoping to find remedy for the disease which continued to cause mayhem to the children of northern Uganda.
Like Scott Dowell, director of the division of global disease detection and emergency response of the Centers for Disease Control would say in a February media brief at the US mission Uganda; “We have a long list of things that are not causing nodding disease. We still don’t have a definitive cause.”
In that confusion, desperate parents prescribed anything they thought would better their children, from random drugs to shroud local herbs.
Today, she’s registered some progress. My first impression on seeing her only for the second time in a month was her appetite. It had remarkably improved. Closely seated in a neat circle of siblings, she opened ground nut shells while easily eating the seeds without getting attacked by the nodding syndrome.
“There is some improvement from the time Medical Team International came with some drugs for her. The doctors have been giving us a variety of drugs (tablets) to experiment. Depending on which one works, we are going to continue like that.
“She’s still attacked by the nodding syndrome. She does not miss a day but the impact is no longer as serious as it used to be. Today she nodes maybe twice a day, as opposed to about 10 times she used to be attacked,” Odongkara says, seated under a tree his daughter used to be tied.
“It really feels good to see my daughter improve but her mental status continues to worry me. She still cannot talk, rarely response to orders, cannot do anything constructive and always looked disturbed that’s why I still tie her whenever am living her alone home,” Grace Akumu said.
Part of this progress is a result of the ministry of health opening up three nodding disease treatment and screening centers’ in the northern Ugandan districts of Kitgum, Pader and Lamwo, where the illness has been identified.
Thank you so much Sussane Possing for them poem. I hope she will get to read and understand it one day.And a thank you, goes to all who sent me with comfort messages.