In November of 2012, we wrote an in-depth profile on one of our patients in Ecuador, Jose Francisco, who has been living with a condition called cryptorchidism (undescended testicles). Without surgery, this condition puts him at risk for infertility and, most importantly, raises his chances for developing testicular cancer.
Jose received the first of two necessary surgeries in early November at the Hospital Provincial General Docente in Riobamba, Ecuador. As Jose’s medical condition affected both testicles, his treatment called for two surgeries to be performed separately. Although the surgeon originally recommended a resting period of six months in between each operation, Jose recovered extremely quickly from the first, making it possible to operate again just three months later.
On Wednesday, January 30, 2013, Jose returned to the same hospital to receive the second of his two surgeries. Accompanied by MEDLIFE Field Nurse Maria Chavez, he entered the hospital early in the morning to take the required preliminary exams. Although Jose had recently been sick with flu symptoms, doctors verified that he was well and able to receive the operation, which was scheduled for 6 pm that night.
On Thursday morning, MEDLIFE Ecuador staff members went to visit Jose in his room. “It was amazing to see him, happy and content, as if nothing had happened,” said MEDLIFE Director of Ecuador Martha Chicaiza. “It’s always incredible to see a patient attended to and treated in time, especially when it’s a child.”
Doctors and MEDLIFE staff will continue to monitor Jose’s development post-surgery. If the operations were successful, his testicles will continue to develop normally as he grows. Doctors explained that because of Jose’s age, 11 years, he faces greater risks of complications.
“If we had found him when he was younger, we could have helped him better,” says Martha. “Many times this happens in Ecuador – patients don’t get the help they need in time because of the lack of education, or because they are scared of certain treatments or surgeries.”
As Jose recuperates at home, MEDLIFE will continue to monitor and support his full recovery.