THE family of an 11-month-old baby girl with a huge cone-shaped growth on her head are desperate to find a surgeon to remove it. Little MK Cruz was born with, a condition which caused excess fluid to fill the inside cavities of her brain.
An 11-month-old baby has a growth shaped like a cone sprouting from the top of her headIt meant only half her skull developed while a fluid-filled ball – bigger than her head – formed on the outside.
Her father, Reynaldo Cruz, a tricycle driver from Manila, the Philippines, said that the growth has started swelling out of control. The massive lump is now affecting her eyesight and they are trying to save money to get it removed. But the reconstructive surgery is high-risk and they are struggling to find a doctor willing to undertake the operation.
The 32-year-old said: “The doctor is confident that hopefully, her eyes can recover once the growth on her head is removed. “But it’s a very risky operation and the doctors here said that they cannot do both procedures.
“Without the operations, I don’t know what will happen to our daughter.” MK, who will celebrate her first birthday this month, needs a shunt procedure where a tube will be inserted on the brain to drain the fluid and redirect it to another location in the body.
After draining the excess fluid, she will need another operation for the repair of her skull. Reynaldo added: “We were told that we need to await a doctor from the U.S. before we can do the second procedure because there was nobody who could do this operation in the Philippines.
“We are not sure yet if there is someone willing to come here to do the operation. Without the surgery to repair her skull it will be permanently deformed.”
WHAT IS HYDROCEPHALUS?
Hydrocephalus is a build-up of fluid on the brain. The excess fluid puts pressure on the brain, which can damage it.The damage to the brain can cause a wide range of symptoms, including headache, being sick, blurred vision and difficulty walking.The brain constantly produces new cerebrospinal fluid (about a pint a day), while old fluid is released from the brain and absorbed into the blood vessels.
However, if this process is interrupted, the level of fluid can quickly build-up, placing pressure on the brain.Hydrocephalus most commonly affects infants and older people and can be present at birth, develop after birth or develop in older people.Babies born with the condition need immediate surgery to avoid being left permanently disabled.It can be successfully treated by placing a drainage tube in the head to remove the fluid.
Reynaldo’s partner and the mother of MK, Cathleen Keith Chavoso, 18, said that neighbours and other people in their community had helped the family with donations.
She said that they are now saving for the operation which is expected to several thousand dollars even if they can find a doctor.
Cathleen said: “My daughter can be saved. There are doctors who can do it. We will keep fighting for her.”