TVM girl diagnosed with rare disease in UAE reaches Kerala
Abu Dhabi: Neethu Shaji Panicker, 20-year-old girl from Thiruvananthapuram who was diagnosed with a rare disease in Abu Dhabi, was brought to Kerala for treatment at the Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology in Thiruvananthapuram. She was under treatment in Abu Dhabi Sheikh Khaleefa Medical City for more than 6 months. Neethu was taken to Kerala on Air India flight from Sharjah on Thursday midnight.
According to reports, Norka Roots representatives will accompany her to the hospital in Kerala. Her mother Bindhu and a nurse from the hospital in Abu Dhabi also boarded the flight along with her.
Neethu is suffering from a rare medical disorder called ‘autoimmune encephalitis’. The early symptoms of the disease were minor fever and vomiting. But within a few days, she started to suffer continuous seizure.
She arrived in UAE to visit her husband in Sharjah late January.
On March 27, she was admitted in the ventilator at Sheikh Khaleefa Medical City here. For more than 4 months, she was in the ventilator. Her disease was confirmed following a blood test in USA.
The disease refers to a group of conditions that occur when the immune system attacks healthy brain cells, leading to inflammation of the brain.
"We were told by doctors that people with autoimmune encephalitis may have various neurologic and psychiatric symptoms. My daughter has all such symptoms," said her mother, Bindu Lalitha.
Though she was paralysed below the waist, she became conscious following the treatment in UAE.
But Neethu would not be able to continue her treatment here as she is on a visiting visa. She was supposed to leave the country by September 26 as per the visa rules.
Following this, Indian Embassy made arrangements to take her to Kerala. But as her health condition became worse, the trip was delayed for more than two weeks.
Observing slight progress in her health condition, the doctors agreed to take her to Kerala.
Minister for Industries EP Jayarajan and speaker P Sreeramakrishnan promised all help to Neethu when they visited her in Abu Dhabi.
Neethu’s mother had sold her property to meet the expense of Neethu’s treatment. Though she is worried about the treatment, she hopes the government will help her.
"I worked odd, menial jobs to raise my kids after coming to the UAE 10 years ago. My daughter was married in December last year to Jithin, who works in Sharjah. She came to the UAE on a visit visa late January and got ill by March 17," said Neethu’s mother Bindu.
The 40-year-old mother currently works at a tailoring shop and says that she struggled hard to raise her two kids after her husband abandoned them.
(With added inputs from IANS)