Health is Wealth

Saturday, August 15, my uncle had to undergo a minor liver operation of some sort. Getting ill is never easy, nor does losing your loved one. The family had to struggle with their finances and I was there to show and extend my sympathies. Also, hard pressed with money, I gave a small amount which I think is nothing compared to the running hospital bills. Nonetheless, it’s the thought that counts. A mere greeting and prayers can do great things. My Uncle or Papa Allan, as I call him growing up in Cebu, is still ever jolly. He cracked jokes here and there with the attending doctors and nurses. Same old, same old, but age and his current situation has shown in his now pale face. My Papa Allan looks more like my Papa Eddieboy, with high-bridged nose, brown-complexion and now lean built. I’m not posting any photos on this blog since it will be unethical to do so during this sad time.

When I saw him came out of the Cardiac Catheterization and Intervention Unit (CCIU) of the University of Santo Tomas Hospital, my heart was crushed and I was surprised to see he’s lost a lot of weight. He looks different from when I remembered him way back 5 to 8 years ago in Butuan City. It’s been quite a while that I see my distant relatives. They stopped visiting Cebu when my grandparents died a few years ago.

Thursday, I called up my Auntie and expressed my willingness to accompany her on her next visit to the hospital. She’s been kind to have arranged their stay when my cousins Auntie Sarah Jean, Alben and uncle arrived in Manila. Auntie Annie is always the down-to-Earth Aunt of all my father’s siblings. She’s been helping them with whatever she can and the best she can. I also made sure I handed her a simple birthday gift to cheer her up during these trying times. She turned 54 in August 14.

In the hospital, I didn’t ask further details from my cousins of what’s going on. Being in that situation alone is stressful. I didn’t want to add to the stress. I was there to listen and show sympathy. I fetched straws from the cafeteria for my uncle to drink a whey peptide-based milk formula. His feeding has to be gradual to increased intake for him to regain his strength. From what my cousin told me, my uncle underwent an invasive procedure where the doctors blocked the artery that supplies blood to the tumour. His was in his right lobe of the liver. Doctors didn’t operate on both livers. The body can’t sustain if so. He still has cystic mass in his left liver. Know more about Liver Tumours and how to manage them.

I hope and pray the family is going to surpass this once and for all. We just lost Uncle Borge in March to liver complications.

I learned that the major risk factors for liver tumour, or worse, cancer , are infection with Hepatitis B and C and heavy alcohol consumption, all of which can cause cirrhosis. Smoking is bad. Let’s lead a healthy lifestyle.

HEALTHY LIVER VS ALCOHOLIC LIVER. (I do not own the rights to this photo. ) Sources: http://arabicherbalmedicine.com/?p=283
HEALTHY LIVER VS ALCOHOLIC LIVER. (I do not own the rights to this photo. ) Sources: http://arabicherbalmedicine.com/?p=283

We don’t want to end up with an alcoholic liver.

So far, the family is happy that we’ve chosen to have him treated in USTH. The doctors are approachable. They are very patient when it comes to loved-ones asking questions try to understand the medical procedure and what care needs to be done after the patient gets discharged. By far, they are the BEST, courteous and polite staff we’ve encountered as compared to hospitals in Butuan City and Cebu City. Thanks to Dr. Chua and Dr. Co.

I took their hospital survey and gave good ratings through this link:

Tell us about your hospital experience in USTH. Click here.

University of Santo Tomas Hospital is located in España Boulevard, Manila. It was my first time to go to that part of Manila. I was coming from Imus, my Auntie from Sucat. We rendezvous in Baclaran and got off in Dimasalang and took a jeep. We alight at Espana Blvd – Lacson Avenue Intersecion and took a walk to UST Main building.

Below is their contact information:
Mailing Address

University of Santo Tomas Hospital
España Boulevard, Manila 1008
Philippines

General Information and Comments

Email:  medicaltourism@usthospital.com.ph

USTH Telephone Directory

Frequently called numbers are listed below.
Please call +63 (02) 731-3001 for local assistance.
We’ll be glad to assist you.

OFFICE LOCAL NO
Accounting Department 2331
Billing Section (Private Division) 2425
Billing Section (Clinical Division) 2662
Clinical Pathology (Laboratory) 2427
Medical Records 2258/2284
Medical Social Service 2378
Medico Legal 2448
Out Patient Department 2370
Pastoral Care 2327
Pharmacy 2248/2215/2271
Philhealth (Private Division) 2431
Philhealth (Clinical Division) 2481

 

Update (3/4/2016):

We lost Papa Allan(eldest son of Macaria and Anastacio Navares) in September 23, 2015. His liver complications got worse.

2015 was a sad year for our family. We first lost Uncle Borge(youngest son to Allan Navarez) in March 2015, followed by my father, Papa Eddieboy, youngest of the siblings, in September 15. Then, Papa Allan, 8 days after. And January of this year, we said goodbye to Uncle Edgar. He too had liver cirrhosis.

My father’s death was most tragic since he’s life was taken by murder. May he rest in peace. May his soul be granted eternal repose. Amen.Amen.Amen. Amen.

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