Life is incomplete without challenges

Usha Kanta Kavuru – Hyderabad, 2011

Hey! I am Usha. My life is also was also as normal as anyone else’s, completion of education, marriage, and children. After my children grew up I started a business with a small jute bag unit. Business was flourishing well. Children were also doing well in their education and there were no problems as such. Life was going on smoothly. And of course if it goes on smoothly like that how it be called life?

One day when I was in the factory I felt giddy. After some days I had fever. My Doctor prescribed some medicines thinking it to be common viral fever. I took the medicines and the fever came down but the cough was not controlled. I took the medicines for 10 days. Cough which was to be controlled within a week or 10 days did not come down. I myself asked my doctor for a blood test to be done. He said to wait for a week and after that also if the problem persists I can go for blood tests. I was also convinced. Within a week cough came to control. Everything was going on smoothly once again.

Another two months passed on. Then I didn’t have any appetite. I didn’t feel like eating anything. I thought it may be due to gastric problem and passed one more month like that. But gradually I felt very weak. I attributed it to work load of minding the children’s work and factory work. But the situation worsened and I decided to have a complete check up. Immediately I got all the blood tests, scanning and x-ray done. I took all the reports and went to the doctor along with my husband and my brother. I felt something was running different in me. But didn’t understand what it was. Doctor advised me to give blood sample again. He was worried seeing that report. By then my family doctor, whom I was visiting regularly, came. He went and chatted with the doctor inside. After that doctor called me and told that a few more tests are to be done. I just nodded and came out.

I asked my brother if the situation was problematic. He replied that nothing can be told until other tests are done. I had all the tests done. Reports also came. We went to Dr. Raghunadharao at NIMS. He saw all the reports and declared that I had CML. I knew it was blood cancer. I felt shocked. My children are very young. My son is studying in the first class and my daughter is studying in 5th class. I was immersed in grief. With fear I started using the medicines prescribed by Dr. Raghunadharao.

Hah! How life has changed! I was so busy that even 24 hours were not enough for me. But now I am not able to get down from the cot. I always had body pains, fever and loss of appetite. Every morning and evening injections and visits to the doctor. Money was spent as water. I didn’t understand what was happening. Six months have passed away. There was no change in my condition.

Once I asked Dr. Raghunadharao that my relatives told there is a much better medicine in US. Shall I go to US and use that medicine. But he told that don’t be in a hurry. I felt disappointed. But after 15 days I again had some health problem and went to NIMS. They told my body was not withstanding to the medicine I was taking and that I should use a new medicine called Glivec. I bought Glivec and started using it. It costs nearly 1 lakh twenty thousand and above. That means my monthly medicinal expenditure was 1.27 lakhs. In this way I used for 5 months. It was very difficult to adjust such huge amount every month. Friends, my  parents helped me a lot. But how long this will continue? Situation had worsened gradually. I asked the doctor how long I should use Glivec. It is very difficult for me if I should continue using it. He said let’s see!But don’t stop using. I agreed and came back. But I felt how long I can afford this expenditure. Sometime later the doctor himself called me and my husband. We went and met him. He told us some good news. He told us about the programme of Novartis and Max Foundation and told us how to contact them. We felt very happy. As soon I came home I contacted Max Foundation and gave them my details. I cannot forget that day when Vijji Amma called me told that I would be given the medicines through their Foundation. Thanks to Max Foundation and Novartis.

After using Glivec I felt my past days have returned. I can do my work now. Only thing is that I feel I am getting tired soon. Since 9 years I am using Glivec.

My son who was studying first class is now studying Intermediate and my daughter who was studying fifth class is now studying B.Tech. It is as though I woke up from a night mare. I really thank Glivec and Max Foundation.