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Family begs for $5,000

Published: 
Tuesday, July 3, 2018
Baby Christopher needs urgent brain scan
Christine Sahadeo and Curtis Poonilal with their one-year-old son Christopher Sahadeo Poonilal at GML’s office in San Fernando yesterday. PICTURE KRISTIAN DE SILVA

Seven months after he was injured when his parents’ home collapsed during heavy rainfall, baby Christopher Sahadeo Poonilal has suffered a seizure at home.

His parents Curtis Poonilal and Christine Sahadeo are now frantically trying to raise $5,000 to do an electroencephalography scan on his brain at a private medical hospital. Electroencephalography is an electro-physiological monitoring method used to record the electrical activity of the brain.

Christopher has been treated at the San Fernando General Hospital and has since been discharged, but Poonilal said he was told by hospital staff that the electroencephalography machine has not been working for the past two years so the scan could not be done at the hospital.

Saying his son desperately needed the scan, Poonilal said he was now in the process of going door to door to get assistance.

“Things are hard at home because I am not getting work. I stay home to care for him and we are barely managing, so finding $5,000 now to do the scan is difficult,” Poonilal said.

Ceiling tiles fell on top of Christopher’s head when their wooden home at Enid Village, Rio Claro collapsed. After the T&T Guardian highlighted their story in January, members of the public came forward and donated building materials for Poonilal to rebuild their home. Since then, Poonilal said Christopher has been growing well.

“He is saying words, he is growing so nice and when he got the seizure on Saturday I thought he would die in my arms,” Poonilal cried, adding Christopher’s eyes began rolling up in his head and he started to stretch out.

“His body started to stiffen. It was worse than we ever saw. We took him to the health centre and the ambulance carried him to the hospital.”

Poonilal said although his son had an emergency card it took almost a day before he was finally admitted to the ward. During this time, Poonilal said his son started to lose his sight.

“I was snapping my finger in front of his eyes and calling him and he was turning around and looking for me even though I was right in front of him,” Poonilal said. He said a team of doctors led by Dr Rajindra Parag eventually took charge of Christopher and saved his life.

“I am so thankful to Dr Parag. He explained everything to us and he was very kind and compassionate,” Poonilal said.

He added that once the electroencephalography scan is done doctors will be able to monitor the electrical activity of Christopher’s brain. Anyone wanting to assist Poonilal can contact him at 380-3606.

Contacted yesterday, Southwest Regional Health Authority CEO Dr Albert Persaud confirmed the hospital did not have an electroencephalography machine.

“We need to procure a new machine as the old one has run its life. We are looking into it and a machine has already been ordered,” Persaud said.

He could not say when the machine will be brought in or what was the cost.

 

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