My nipple just dropped – Wanjiru’s story

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As a lady, what would you do if one day your nipple drops? Well that is a situation that occurred to one Wanjiru, a resident of Githurai due to breast cancer.

In one of the daycare sessions at Nairobi Hospice, Wanjiru shared her story to ehospice.

According to her, nothing seemed abnormal with her breast until the nipple came off. This prompted her to seek medical attention.

“I was shocked and went to Thika General Hospital where I was sent for a scan in one of their departments. The following day I returned to the same hospital and some flesh from the affected breast was taken for tests.” She narrated.

Wanjiru had to wait for seven day to know what caused her nipple to suddenly come off despite having not felt any pain.

One of her worst fears came to reality when the doctor, seven days later, confirmed that she was suffering from breast cancer and the sad part being that it was at the third stage.

“The doctor referred me to Kenyatta hospital where I was told to book for surgery which was to cost KES. 20,000. I did not have the money, so I had to go and look for the funds to enable me undergo surgery.” She said.

After soliciting for the funds and returning to the hospital, the doctors were on strike which meant that Wanjiru had to reschedule her surgery date.

During this time the wound on her breast was becoming worse by the day, with some parts of the breast developing wounds with pus.

By the time her schedule for surgery was due, doctors told her that an operation would not be possible because the cancer had spread.

“They recommended chemotherapy which I later started with six sessions. After chemotherapy I went in for 16 sessions of radiotherapy.”

Wanjiru said she completed the last session of radiotherapy last month (April 2013) and according to the doctor, she is supposed to have more sessions of chemotherapy.

“I do not want to go for chemotherapy again because it affected me a lot the previous time. I also have no money to foot the huge bill for the sessions.” She said.

Amid tears, she said that her experience is not a good life live adding that the treatment is expensive and most family members have distanced themselves from her.

She says her knowledge of Nairobi Hospice in early March this year has brought hope in her life as she gets much help.

“They give me drugs even if I have no money to pay for them.” She said.

Wanjiru says that fellow patients have given her encouragement to live through each day and the support they receive of clothes and food stuffs as patients from visitors during daycare sessions goes a long way in improving their health.

She says that she is able to visit Nairobi Hospice every Thursday and the shock of cancer has since simmered with the encouragement and experiences shared by patients.

“My ability to work is at its lowest because my wound starts bleeding if I strain.” She said.

Her plea to the government is to have cancer treatment made affordable so that patients of all walks of life can access it to help bring an end to financial oblivion suffered by many.

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