African Press International (API)

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Kenya: Baby bitten by snake loses brave fight for his life

Posted by African Press International on June 23, 2016

EUNICE KILONZO -1 | Jumatano, Juni 22, 2016

A four-month-old baby who was airlifted from Samburu to Nairobi on Sunday following a snake bite has died.

Mperesi succumbed to kidney failure on Tuesday morning at the Kenyatta National Hospital, two days after he was admitted in the acute room in Ward 3B and at least 10 days after he was bitten by the snake in his home in Waso West, Samburu.

Doctors had recommended dialysis as his kidneys were not functioning but this did not happen.

“At around 7.30am, I had just paid Sh5,500 for them to take him for a scan and I was waiting for a receipt when he developed breathing difficulties and in a minute, he was gone,” said the father, Leadilia Ebby, 38, on Tuesday.

His wife, 28-year-old Nangera Leadilia, fought back tears as he spoke about their child.

“He was very bubbly, always smiling and a joy to his other siblings. He had such bright eyes and it is really sad that we lost him,” Mr Ebby said as he fastened his colourful shuka to keep the Nairobi chill at bay.

On Monday, the anticipation that their child would get better was evident in his eyes but now, the pain and anguish that their baby’s body was not up to the challenge was too much to bear for his second wife, Nangera, who was speechless the entire time. She has two other children and her co-wife has seven.

Nangerea’s eyes welled with tears, perhaps thinking of her son whose bright eyes she would never see again.

The family says they will not bury their child in their ancestral land but have allowed KNH to inter the body.

“Now we have a Sh180,000 bill to clear at Kenyatta. We only have about Sh80,000 and we are appealing for assistance from fellow Kenyans,” said the father.

On Monday, doctors had recommended dialysis to rid his body of toxins after his kidneys failed.

On Tuesday, a catheter was fixed to mechanically drain urine into a bag but it was only filling up with blood, making the dialysis necessary.

He had also been given the anti-venom to neutralise the snake poison.

Initially, doctors were uncertain of the snake bite but further physical examination showed two tiny marks—where the snake’s fangs went in—on the baby’s left palm.

According to Mr Ebby, the baby was bitten by the snake nearly two weeks ago and no one knew until his body began swelling.

The family is yet to establish the type of snake that fatally bit their baby or how he survived for nearly two weeks, given that some snake bites are lethal.

He said such snake bites in his community are treated by inducing vomiting to “expel the poison” but they only massaged the baby when the swelling began because they did not know he had been bitten by a snake

End. / Nation news Kenya

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