By Job Osazuwa
An eight-year-old boy, Nabena Nathaniel is battling for his life. Blood cancer has already stolen one of his eyes.
The ailment is stealthily stealing the young boy’s bright future, except help quickly comes his way.
Nathaniel, who has been flown to the United Kingdom (UK), for better treatment, was initially diagnosed with Myeloid Sarcoma of the left eye which was confirmed by biopsy in Nigeria.
Nathaniel is eight, but the pain and discomfort that his young body has endured in three years is better imagined than experienced.
His father, Ebisidor Nabena, said that his son immediately underwent chemotherapy treatment to tackle the disease. He stated that though the treatment helped, the tumour in his left eye began to grow again, unfortunately.
“He was then referred to the Lagos University Teaching Hospital ((LUTH), where a bone marrow aspiration was performed. The results of this procedure confirmed that Nathaniel was now facing Acute Myeloid Leukaemia, a type of blood cancer that starts from young white blood cells in the bone marrow.
“Nathaniel again underwent chemotherapy treatment. Throughout this whole ordeal, which took place over the span of three years, my son fought with such bravery and strength.
“Unfortunately, with a heavy heart, my son had his left eye removed in Nigeria on September 3 2020 as the tumour was relentless and removal was the only option.
“Today, Nathaniel is in London on a trip to see a specialist to fit a prosthetic eye. He again fell ill and is now in Croydon University Hospital being treated by the oncology consultants,” his father narrated on the telephone.
He said that the ailment started with a slight swelling, but in no time, the eyeball started gorging out of its socket.
Seeking solution, he had taken the poor boy to the Eye Foundation Hospital, Ikeja and was later referred to the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH).
Decrying the high cost of managing the ailment, Nabena, who hailed from Aduku town in Sagbama Local Government Area (LGA) of Bayelsa State, lamented that it has eaten deep into the family’s purse, having spent over N30 million.
He stated that they were already stranded in the UK while his son’s health continues to deteriorate by the day.
He pleaded with Nigerians to donate whatever they could so that his son could be admitted to a specialist hospital in London to have a lifesaving stem cell transplant.
Financial assistance could be rendered to the Nebenas through his account in Access Bank. The account name is Nathaniel Nabena, and account number is 0772662149,.