Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Haitian Dwindles

Many children get the "dwindles" in Haiti. They lose weight, have fevers, quit eating the little they were eating, and can’t learn in school.

Such was the case with Angeline who I examined in the clinic yesterday. Angeline is 7 years old and weighs 29 pounds.

Her exam was normal other than appearing quite chachectic as you can see. So I will work her up for tuberculosis. I treated suspected worms living in her gastrointestinal tract empirically and gave her iron and vitamin supplements.

What Angeline really needs is a government that cares about her and thousands of other Haitian kids with the dwindles, and does something about it. Downstream efforts like mine are ok, but Haiti needs upstream efforts that prevent medical problems from occurring in the first place.

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