Hope Stories


Nur Ayesha– A Repaired Obstetric Fistula Sufferer:

Forty years ago, Nur Ayesha first noticed the urine incontinence. A woman from Ramu, Cox’s Bazar, she was deeply suffering from this complication. It was caused by obstructed delivery. Nur Ayesha gave birth at home, as most all women in this rural area do, and was attended to by a traditional birth attendant. Lacking proper medical attention, she was in labor for six days! Nur Ayesha took every initiative to find relief. Throughout the process she was hospitalized at several hospitals but they lacked an experienced surgeon to perform the surgery. Ayesha’s husband left her believing she was a cursed woman. Her neighbors gave the same reaction. After forty long years of suffering, she was referred to HOPE Hospital and a surgery was performed. She did not have any hesitation to be treated at this hospital and took the services into her full confidence. Today, Ayesha is completely cured and is following all the instructions of the surgeon. She is very keen to work in her community to let other fistula sufferers know that this is curable. She is a happy woman now!

5 Imtiaj with mother

Imtiaj Hossen Babu “ A Cleft Survivor:

Imtiaj Hossen Babu was born with cleft lip and cleft palate and he required surgery. Babu is the second of three children living in the outskirts of Cox’s Bazar town on a hill with a risk of having their house demolished by the landslide during monsoon at any time. It was obvious the family was unable to pay for his vital surgery. A team from HOPE foundation visited Babu at his home and came to know about his present condition and his parent’s lack of a plan regarding his deformity. Due to our efforts, Babu’s parents were educated about the cleft lip and palate surgery camp at Hope hospital and registered their child; they continued to keep themselves in touch with the HOPE hospital officials. Imtiaj Hossen Babu was one patient treated by Dr. Aziz during his visit. At age four, his lip is finally repaired. Babu needs another surgery for the deformity of his palate. Still Babu cannot speak. He will undergo surgery for his cleft palate in a second phase of surgery and reconstruction. His parents are very hopeful that their child will be able to live a happy life with a lovely smile. Follow Imtiaj’s success story; we will update you after his second surgery!- report from HOPE Hospital

2 3

Anjuma Khatun– Cleft Role Model:

Anjuma Khatun, an 18 year old refugee from Myanmar, was born with congenital deformity of her lip without any ancestral history of such deformity. Her parents believed it was caused when her mother cut something at the time of lunar or solar eclipse when she was expecting Anjuma, as superstition is rampant when medical knowledge is unavailable.. For the last eight years she has been living in Bangladesh due to the violence and instability Myanmar poses for families like Anjuma’s. For the last three years she has been living in Kutupalong refugee camp in Ukhiya, Cox’s Bazar. The deformity was profoundly disturbing and embarrassing for Anjuma. Camp minors mocked her, which made her life in the refugee camp unbearable. Anjuma was alone, and faced everyday with despair. Anjuma’s parents had been hoping to find a way to surgically correct the cleft ever since she was born. In the refugee camp, Anjuma discovered information about the cleft camp sponsored by HOPE Foundation and Smile Bangladesh. Anjuma’s doctors, MSF Holland (Doctors without Borders) arranged registration and travel for Anjuma and her family to come to HOPE Hospital for surgery. The operation was a success, and Anjuma looks beautiful! She and her family are happy and free from the anxiety and burden that was haunting their everyday lives. They have returned to the refugee camp, and Anjuma is dreaming of a new life of exciting possibilities. Anjuma’s family plans to return to Myanmar when the situation in her home country is more stable and secure, allowing for their return.


Sanowara Begum– Free of Fistula:

When 18-year-old Sanowara Begum suffered a medical complication during the tragic loss of her firstborn child from intrauterine death, she could not have imagined the next seven years of frustration, distress, and emotional pain she would have to endure. Sanowara, now 25, of Cox’s Bazar, developed a vesicovaginal fistula, a condition that caused continuous seepage of urine. The condition and the resulting unpleasant odor made her unwelcome to neighbors and visiting relatives, and deprived Sanowara of the happy conjugal life she desired. Sanowara sought medical care for her condition, but everywhere she turned she found frustration. She saw doctors, had examinations and followed their advice, but nothing worked. In 2006, Sanowara went to large hospital in the City of Chittagong for help, but left without informing the doctors, because she could not pay for the treatment. She tried a private hospital in Cox’s Bazar, but once again could not afford the expensive treatment. Seven years of failed attempts to get the help she needed left Sanowara miserable and helpless. Then, she found HOPE. She hesitated at first, but contact with HOPE hospital officials and doctors encouraged her, and she finally got the surgery she had needed for so long. She is now free to live a normal, full life. Sanowara hopes to work in the garment industry and become self-reliant, to shoulder some of the responsibilities of her parents, brothers, and sisters with whom she has been living. Sanowara is so grateful to her family who assisted her during her seven years of physical and emotional pain, and as she is now healthy, she plans to support them in every way she can.

Ayesha Siddiqua– Successful Obstetric Fistula Patient:

Ayesha Siddiqua is eighteen years old. She is from Teknaf, Cox’s Bazar. She got married at the age of twelve and a half and after about two years she delivered her first baby. Within a very short span of time in life Ayesha did experience a lot. For delivery Ayesha was not taken to the hospital. One of the reasons for not being at hospital was the suggestion from the traditional birth attendant, that is, she did discourage her family members. Given this circumstances, she delivered at home. Not only that the obstructed delivery did develop the complication (VVF) but also paralyzed her that took long time to be cured. Ayesha visited as many as seven hospitals and clinics for the problem of urine incontinence. Doctors suggested her operation. But poverty did constrain her and did prolong her sufferings. However, Ayesha has undergone a surgery at the Hope hospital that beckons a new life. Ayesha wants to be trained on how to deal with delivery as she does not want to see any other suffering from this complication.