Help Raise Funds for Teen with Superior Mesenteric Artery Syndrome

In March 2022, T. Kavinraj began experiencing a number of worrying health symptoms. He had a splitting headache and could not stop vomiting. In fact, his condition was so bad that he was unable to keep any food and drinks down; the student, in Malaysia’s Form Four, dropped from 99 pounds to just 68 pounds. Eventually, shares an article in The Star, his family began taking him to different doctors and hospitals. It took three hospitals, and a number of various tests, before 16-year-old Kavinraj was diagnosed with a rare digestive system disorder called superior mesenteric artery syndrome.

Doctors have stated that Kavinraj should have surgery to address this condition as soon as possible. Unfortunately, there have been several obstacles. First, Kavinraj is currently undernourished; doctors will not operate until they feel that the teen meets other requirements.

The other is that the surgery places a financial burden on the family. S. Thangrajan, Kavinraj’s father, shares that the surgery would cost around RM150,000 (approx. $34,622). Kavinraj’s mother is not currently employed. She and Thangrajan also have a daughter, which means that Thangrajan’s monthly salary of RM3,500 (approx. $812) must support the entire family.

Between insurance and other donations, the family has collected RM50,000 (approx. $11,500) to put towards the surgery. If you would like to donate, or to learn more about Kavinraj, you may contact his father at +60 016-732 3576.

What is Superior Mesenteric Artery Syndrome?

According to the International Foundation for Gastrointestinal Disorders, superior mesenteric artery syndrome:

may be referred to at SMA Syndrome or as SMAS, and by a variety of other names including Cast syndrome, Wilkie syndrome, arteriomesenteric duodenal obstruction, and chronic duodenal ileus.

The superior mesenteric artery carries blood to the small intestine and colon. This condition occurs when the superior mesenteric artery obstructs or compresses the duodenum, or the first part of the small intestine. As a result, food is unable to move through the small intestine. There are a number of causes for superior mesenteric artery syndrome, such as significant weight loss, corrective spinal surgery for scoliosis, lordosis, or prolonged bed rest (among others). Symptoms can include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Abdominal pain which worsens after eating
  • Heartburn
  • Food regurgitation
  • Chest pain
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Abdominal distention
  • Indigestion
Jessica Lynn

Jessica Lynn

Jessica Lynn has an educational background in writing and marketing. She firmly believes in the power of writing in amplifying voices, and looks forward to doing so for the rare disease community.

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