Tanzania – Haruna

CAT_3750 Haruna Selemani portrait

Haruna

Haruna lost her daughter to TB, she was very afraid when her clinic was unable to find out what was wrong with her.

“I’ve been ill for 3 months now. It started with a terrible cough and night sweats, but now I am very weak from not not being able to eat much. I was tested for tuberculosis (TB) twice by my local clinic, but both times the results were negative. I was confused and scared. It’s very discouraging if you are getting worse and worse and no one can help you.

After my last test, the clinic called me back to say that they had given me a wrong diagnosis because they had not detected the TB in my body. And in fact, I needed to come back right away and start the treatment for TB. They explained that my sample had been sent to APOPO who tested it using rats that can smell TB and they found it. APOPO rechecked the sample using advanced equipment and confirmed the rats were right. Now I started treatment and I am still ill but feeling better every day.

I was scared because TB has already claimed one of my two children. Both were sick and they went to the clinic to get tested but again, the clinic couldn’t find the reason for their illness. After a month and four tests, my daughter died. She left behind her family, including two children who we help to look after. My son eventually was diagnosed with TB and is getting better.

The is a lot of TB in Tanzania. We need better methods to diagnose it before it’s too late. I am very grateful to APOPO and the HeroRATs – they saved my life. I wish all the clinics could have the support from these creatures. Maybe then my daughter would still be alive and my grandchildren would have their mother.”

Haruna lost her daughter to TB, she was very afraid when her clinic was unable to find out what was wrong with her.

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