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Being around his students helps brain tumour patient recover

Mambo’s condition requires continuous treatment as the tumours keep on spreading/MUTHONI NJUKI

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 28 – Imagine developing a condition that takes years to be diagnosed, change of medication now and then, being rendered immobile due to illness and not forgetting constrained financial resources.

This is the tale of Samson Mambo whose life has been that of constant hospital visits for the past one year and is now at a pivotal stage requiring Sh1.5 million as medical fees.

It all started as a minor condition characterised by bouts of headaches which Mambo thought could have resulted from something he had ingested on his trip to Kakamega.

This consequently resulted to him experiencing seizures at his home prompting him to seek medical attention.

What he thought to be just ordinary headaches culminating from his daily duties turned out to be a brain tumour.

Being the least of the news he expected, Mambo sought further medical tests and was finally advised to seek treatment in India.

“The final diagnosis was a nail on the head, it shattered me completely, so many things crossed my mind like my family, life, finances, but I am glad that my employer and part of my medical cover and well wishers came through for me,” a visibly sad Mambo recounted during an Interview with Capital FM News.

“I went to India around July and stayed there for three months to get full treatment before resuming my normal life. I underwent surgery to remove the brain tumour, but after the three months I had run out of cash and had to come back to Kenya and continue with the healing and treatment from here,” Mambo narrated.

The mathematics teacher was bed ridden since he had lost his speech and partially his memory with much healing to take place from the surgeries that he had gone through.

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But despite the condition putting him down, Mambo decided to go back to his profession; teaching after regaining his speech though a bit slurred.

“I stayed home for almost a year, and I must say having been active before the brain tumour. This posed a challenge and so I made a call to my boss Principal Catherine Njuguna and requested if I could be coming to the learning institution and do what I will manage to.”

“Upon deliberations with the management, I was given the nod to be coming to school and this has tremendously helped with my recovery especially with my memory.”

“Samson is one of our exceptional teachers and when he requested to come back to school after almost a year recovering, we were more than glad to agree,” explained Makini’s School Principal Catherine Njuguna.

Although Mambo is not actively back to teaching, being around his students helps in his recovery.

Teacher Mambo reports to school at 9am and leaves at 3pm.  You will find him at his desk and after some time he will go round classrooms, as well spend time with the pupils during break time.

“Since his return to school, we have seen great improvement in his speech and memory,” cited Principal Njuguna.

Teacher Mambo spends Sh60,000 monthly on treatment and medicine, funds that are difficult to have on a monthly basis.

“I go to hospital twice a week spending roughly Sh7500 per session,” Mambo stated.

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No one knows what causes brain tumours there are only a few known risk factors that have been established by research.

Children who receive radiation to the head have a higher risk of developing a brain tumour as adults, as do people who have certain rare genetic conditions such as neurofibromatosis – a genetic neurological disorder that can affect the brain, spinal cord, nerves and skin.

Tumours, or neurofibromas, grow along the body’s nerves or on or underneath the skin or Li-Fraumeni syndrome (LFS) – a rare inherited genetic cancer disorder that greatly increases one’s risk of developing cancer during their lifetime. Sometimes, people with LFS develop multiple cancers and multiple tumours often in childhood or as young adults.

Age is also a risk factor. People between the ages of 65 and 79 make up the population most likely to be diagnosed with a brain tumour.

A primary brain tumour is one that originates in the brain, and not all primary brain tumours are cancerous; benign tumours are not aggressive and normally do not spread to surrounding tissues, although they can be serious and even life threatening.

Mambo’s condition requires continuous treatment as the tumours keep on spreading.

If a brain tumour is not treated then it is possible for the tumour to grow and ultimately cause significant symptoms such as headaches, nausea, vomiting, increased intracranial pressure, and seizures.

“Currently I am on medication to prevent seizures, headaches and nausea. But I need to go through another surgery to remove a tumour that was detected,” explains Mambo.

The surgery was to take place in April but I lacked funds to go through with it.”

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To help Teacher Mambo, receive the much needed medical attention, you can pay through Pay bill number 247247 Account – 0630194803034.

You could also contact him through his wife Miriam Simiyu 0722107489.

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