By Robert Kumwenda
Number of children that are suffering from hydrocephalus and spinal bifida diseases are reported to be on the increase.
Blessings Champeteka coordinator for this year‚Äôs international day of hydrocephalus and spinal bifida diseases day disclosed this to reporters in Blantyre in an interview.
He said the two conditions are serious saying that currently they are having cases of about 120 children with spina bifida and 200 cases of children with hydrocephalus yearly unlike in the past.
‚ÄúThe diseases affect the memory of the child and other facilities of their mental health. The children have the problem in urinating and the majority of them are not able to walk,‚ÄĚ he said.
Chapweteka said spinal bifida is preventable if pregnant mothers eat food that is in rich with foric acid as studies have shown.
‚ÄúThe challenge we are facing is awareness most parents they do not know that the diseases are curable it parents bring children that are infected with the diseases earlier to the hospital for treatment,‚ÄĚ he said.
Also speaking during the event Dr Emma Thomson Cousoctant Pediatric Surgeon at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH) said the problem is that parents whose children suffer from these diseases they do not come to the hospital earlier for treatment.
She said people should remove the misconceptions which they have those children that are born with these diseases it is because their mothers watched gule wamkulu when they were pregnant or witch craft.
‚ÄúThe diseases are not causes by medical conditions but lack of proper diet which contain foric acid, it is like vitamin which is very cheap to buy by eating foods that are in rich with foric acid,‚ÄĚ she said.
Thomson said the number of children suffering from the two diseases has been going up in recent years and she attributed this to the higher number of referrals.
The diseases affect the nerves and blood and because of this the massage does not go through to the brain.
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