Ecuadorian Boy with Bladder Obstruction in Need of Surgery

(Miami, February 28, 2008) – Victor Naranjo is a 13-month-old boy from Ecuador who was born with a rare congenital condition known as Posterior Urethral Valves (PUV), which is caused by an abnormality of the urethra leading to the blockage of the bladder. This condition does not allow him to properly eliminate urine. In fact, while in his mother’s womb Victor suffered from high bladder pressure which caused deterioration in his kidneys and bladder. At his young age, the child has undergone a vesicostomy where an opening was made below his belly button in the abdomen allowing urine to drain continuously from his bladder to his diaper. This procedure which was carried out in Ecuador was necessary to help prevent urine from going back into his kidneys and damaging them. In addition, Victor has undergone two other operations.

Recently, Victor arrived at Holtz Children’s Hospital, in order to receive a surgery that will allow him to urinate normally. Doctors will perform a six to eight hour operation that will relieve the blockage in his urethra and close the hole in his bladder that was made during the vesicostomy. The child may require additional surgeries in the future, depending on the progress and development of the bladder after the initial procedure. “Aside from the quality of life issues, this is a very serious condition, potentially life threatening,” said Dr. Rafael Gosálbez, pediatric urologist at the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Medical Center.

The International Kids Fund (IKF) is helping to raise $30,000 for the boy’s surgery. “Due to the very sensitive nature of Victor’s condition, he has been living in isolation. We ask that you listen to your heart and place yourself in the shoes of this child and family,” said María Luisa Chea, Executive Director of IKF. “We should help give him a chance at having a healthy, happy childhood.”

Victor lives with his parents and one sibling in the city of Guayaquil, located 155 miles from the capital, Quito. They do not have the resources to pay for the costly operation. Due to the demands of Victor’s condition, his mother recently lost her job and his father is currently unemployed. Because the boy is not a U.S. resident, the public hospital cannot use taxpayers’ money to pay for his treatment. Instead, it is being offered to the International Kids Fund (IKF) at charitable rates. The International Kids Fund (IKF) is a program of the Jackson Memorial Foundation that seeks to provide medical care to children from around the world who cannot be treated within their native country, as well as children living in the United States who, without IKF assistance, would otherwise have no options.

“I ask the community to help my son be normal. I overprotect Victor because I live in fear of him getting sick. I do not allow him to be around too many people because I’m afraid he may develop an infection,” said Elizabeth Sánchez, Victor’s mother.