Berbice woman seeks financial help to undergo brain aneurysm surgery


A mother of four of Overwinning, East Bank Berbice is hoping the public can assist her financially to offset a surgery for a ruptured brain aneurysm.

Parbattie Austin, 43, called ‘Ravina’ said her life changed about a month ago when she collapsed while working at the Berbice Expo.

She woke up in the Georgetown Public Hospital almost a week later, unable to see.

Family members told her she suddenly started shaking and fell down at the Expo and was not responding; she was rushed to the Port Mourant Hospital where she was told her blood pressure had skyrocketed and she was admitted in a comatose state.

After spending a day in the hospital, the family decided to move her to a private facility in Berbice where a CT scan showed she had what appeared to be bleeding in the brain.

She was subsequently transferred to New Amsterdam and finally the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation where she was referred to neurosurgeon, Dr Amarnauth Dukhi.

After looking at the scans, Dr Dukhi confirmed she suffered a ruptured brain aneurysm and her condition is considered a “ticking time bomb.”

Surgical treatment for a brain aneurysm is not available in the public health system. She was then referred to a private facility in the capital city – NeuroSpine Services Inc. – which recommended corrective treatment via a minimally invasive procedure called Endovascular treatment using a stent and coiling of the aneurysm to give her a normal life.

According to Dr. Dukhi, Austin’s life is at stake as typically 40% of patients usually do not survive the first rupture and if she suffers a second rupture, 70-80% are usually fatal.

As such, she was advised to get the surgery done as quickly as possible. In the meantime, she has to be free of any stress, physical activity, noise, excessive bright lights etc.

Austin explained that NeuroSpine Services Inc. in collaboration with an interventional radiologist out of the USA will perform this surgical procedure locally for a fraction of what it actually costs overseas.

The total cost including materials used to stent and coil brain aneurysms can run into a few million Guyanese dollars.

This procedure involves using a steerable catheter inserted into the bloodstream guided to the brain in an advanced catheterization lab at the Caribbean Heart Institute.

Relatives have since started a campaign hoping to raise the money needed before it’s too late.

“I really need the help; we cannot afford to do this surgery, the little savings we had were used up during the couple weeks running around and all the tests. Please, I really need help.”

Because of Austin’s medical condition, she is unable to work and the salary of her husband who works in law enforcement is insufficient to raise the amount need in such a short period of time.

Ravina is urging everyone to take regular health checkups as she was caught unaware that her seemingly “normal high pressure” could be life-altering.

“Life does not have a price but right now my life is threatened for a price I cannot afford. What I went through and still is going through I never would want my worst enemy would go through.”

Austin can be reached on telephone number 592-670 -0345 or at the go fund me account

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