By Bilal Kuchay
A baby boy suffering from a rare condition which has caused his head to grow almost the size of a football awaits a life-changing surgery.
Born to parents Muhammad Shafeeq Hussain, 33, and Rubina Bano, 28, nine-month-old Muhammad Hammad from Khuzdar in the Balochistan province of Pakistan suffers from a rare condition called Hydrocephalus – a build-up of fluid inside his skull which can be deadly.
The fluid had caused his head to grow to 64 cms in circumference, leaving the infant immobile and unable to eat or sleep properly.
His mother, Rubina Bano, said: “He was born as a normal child.
“We were very happy that after six years of our marriage finally God has blessed us with a son.
“Everything was fine but once Hammad turned six months old, his head started growing at an abnormal rate.
“In last three month the condition has caused his head to grow almost the size of a football and we are worried about him.”
Hussain and Rubina travelled over 260 miles in a bus and took their only son to Jinnah Post Graduate Medical Centre in Karachi where doctors diagnosed him suffering from Hydrocephalus.
Hydrocephalus is a condition in which there is an accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) within the brain. This typically causes increased pressure inside the skull.
Older people may have headaches, double vision, poor balance, urinary incontinence, personality changes, or mental impairment. In babies there may be a rapid increase in head size.
Dr Muhammad Lal Rehman, who is treating the baby, said “The treatment through shunt surgery is possible although the chances of his head getting normal are very slim.
“But at least we can protect further drainage of his brain through surgery.”
Dr Rehman further said that a recent test shows the baby boy is also suffering from urine infection and until the infection is treated, surgery for Hydrocephalus can’t be performed.
He said: “Once his urine infection is treated, we will soon perform the surgery.”
Rubina, who is seven months pregnant is worried about Hammad.
She said: “I’m worried if the surgery took longer time, who will take care of Hammad during and after delivery.
“I pray to God that his surgery is done very soon so that we can go back to our home before my delivery.”
Hammad’s father, Muhammad Shafeeq Hussain, who works in a textile factory in Orangi Town and earns an estimated £100 per month, hopes for a miracle to happen so that his son can lead a normal life.
He said: “Although doctors have told us there are remote chances of our son getting normal but miracles do happen. I’m hopeful that God will help us during this hard time.
“I pray to God that Hammad’s surgery is done within two weeks because if it takes more time then we might have to take our son back to home because I’m running out of money and also my wife is pregnant.”