Singapore baby with hydrocephalus needs your HELP!

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This Singapore baby with hydrocephalus needs your help for further treatment. A Give.Asia page has been set up...

The sad plight of a Singapore baby Vanden Lim Yongjie, has just come to our notice. This baby is badly in need of extra treatment and care, and needs our help.

Premature baby with post-infectious hydrocephalus

Baby Vanden Lim Yongjie was born in Batam on 23 Nov 2015, at 26 weeks, premature, and weighing only 900 g. Apparently, he had to be delivered early, because of the water bag bursting in his mummy, Afita Nurjayanti's womb.

He had to be kept in the incubator for 2 months. Daddy Vandel Lim (Singaporean) tells theAsianparent, "We were concerned that there was a slight bump on the left side of his head, above the ear, and that there was hardly any weight gain. He was only 1.2 kg when he was discharged back home on 2 Feb 2016."

"By early March 2016, we noticed that Vanden's head was getting abnormally bigger, especially the area on top of his left ear."

"We brought him to KK Hospital (KKH) on 8 May 2016. He weighed only 1.4 kg then; he was very skinny at 5 months old, when he got admitted to KKH. Later, Dr David Low, Head Consultant of Pediatric Neurosurgery, confirmed that he had post-infectious hydrocephalus, with multiple brain cysts. His brain had suffered severe damage from the infection."

Hydrocephalus or "water on the brain"

Hydrocephalus is a brain condition that happens when cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) can't drain from the brain. It then pools, causing a buildup of fluid in the skull.

Hydrocephalus (also called "water on the brain") can make babies' and young children's heads swell to make room for the excess fluid. If left untreated, it can lead to brain damage, a loss in mental and physical abilities, and even death. With early diagnosis and timely treatment, though, most children recover successfully.

Some signs of congenital hydrocephalus are:

  • an unusually large head
  • a thin and shiny scalp with easily visible veins
  • bulging at the soft spot on top of a baby's head
  • downward looking eyes

6 Surgeries so far

Daddy Vandel reveals that so far baby Vanden has undergone 6 intensive surgeries, between May '16 to Sept '16 at KKH, "After the 4th surgery, he suffered lung infection and and had to be kept in the High Dependence Ward for close monitoring, after he got choked up by his own reflex after surgery. This resulted in a few episodes of lung collapse, to the extent that, once his oxygen level dropped down to critical levels!"

He is still unable to drink milk the normal way and has to rely on an NJ tube (inserted below his stomach). "We are advised to try small amounts of oral milk feed daily, to check his ability to cope. His digestive system is still not stable enough for normal oral feed," says Vandel.

Call for help: GIVE.Asia page set up

Says daddy, "Because of his slow development and loss of hearing, he is expected to follow up with lots of therapy (physiotherapy and occupational therapy) and treatment." Currently Vandel is the only breadwinner in the family, as mummy needs to be with the baby 24/7.

"Baby Vanden wasn't born in Singapore either and has yet to get his Singapore citizenship approved (In fact, tomorrow is the ICA interview for citizenship, we pray that he gets it.). He is thus not entitled to any form of government medical subsidies that would otherwise make this situation a little more financially bearable for us." Till date, Vanden's medical bills alone have exceeded $140,000.

A Give.Asia page has been set up, we strongly urge anyone who can help, to contribute to this little baby's treatment. Daddy Vandel has just this to say, "To be frank, my wife and I are taking each day as it comes, we are doing all we can to survive and stay positive on Vanden's progress; hoping and praying that he will grow up well."

Also READ: Orphaned Vietnamese baby with brain condition in Singapore

(Source: KidsHealth, NHS)

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