An impoverished father has revealed that he plans to sell his own kidney to fund life-saving treatment for his three morbidly-obese children, Gurjarat, India.
Sisters Yogita Rameshbhai Nandwana, five, and Anisha, three, and their 18-month-old brother Harsh, are among the world's heaviest young children. Weighing 34kg, 48kg and 15kg respectively, the food they eat in a week is enough to feed two families in a month. Now their father Rameshbhai Nandwana, 34, is planning to sell his kidney to earn the money needed to see top specialists.
Yogita and Anisha eat 18 flatbreads, 1,4kg of rice, two bowls of soup, six packets of crisps, five packs of biscuits, 12 bananas and a litre of milk daily. And their extreme hunger means their mother Pragna Ben, 30, spends most of her day making their meals. She said: "My day starts with making 30 chapatis and 1kg vegetable curry in the morning. After that I am again in the kitchen preparing more food. Their hunger never stops. They demand food all the time and cry and scream if they’re not fed. I am always in the kitchen cooking for them.
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They need me to help them bath or when they need the toilet. I’m only 40 kg so it’s impossible for me to pick them up. It’s a struggle when my husband is at work. They are usually restricted to the same place for the whole day and because of that, they cannot go to school. All they do all day is eat and play and giggle with each other. I want my daughters to get an education and play like other kids. I want them to have a life. This is no life."
Their father Mr Nandwana earns just Rs 3000 (N9,600) a month - but usually has sufficient money to buy enough food to fulfil the large appetite of his children. The father has spent Rs 50,000 (N159,600) on seeing doctors and treatment over the last three years – without any improvement in his children’s condition. The desperate father says: "If my kids continue to grow at this rapid rate they will have major health issues.
We’re terrified they will die. I work in fields, dig wells, and do whatever menial job I can find to earn money. And I’m constantly worried about finding the money to feed my continually hungry children. If I don’t have the money, I borrow it from my brothers and friends. But I make sure I feed my children when they need. They cannot walk; they cannot do anything on their own. Selling my kidney is a desperate measure. But I’m now desperate to get the right help for my children."
The couple have one older daughter, Bhavika, six, who weighs an average 16kg and do not know why their other three children are so big. Local doctors believe the children are suffering from Prader-Willi syndrome, but do not know how to treat it. The rare genetic condition causes various symptoms including constant hunger, reduced muscle tone, restricted growth and learning difficulties.
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