Cameroon: Blogging to save 4 year-old from orbital tumor

Update: It has been reported that on January 8th little Bright Fuh passed away at the hospital where he had been receiving treatment in Yaounde. May he rest in peace.

In mid-November 2008, Cameroon's national TV (CRTV) featured the story of a four year-old boy called Bright Asangwei Fuh suffering from a rare orbital tumor that could not be properly handled in the country. Since then a group of well wishers have created the blog Bright Fuh Supporters, to raise support for the little boy's medical evacuation to the USA. In their own words, this is their mission:

We the supporters and friends of Bright Fuh, have come together to lend our joint efforts to leverage financial, material and human support for Bright Asangwei Fuh, the little Cameroonian child who is fighting for his life at just 4 years of age. He is diagnosed with a rare orbital tumor. Our goal is to help get this child treated in the United States of America. Please join us and volunteer in one of our committees to help get resources together to help Bright and deliver him from such a deadly disease. Join us in Prayers for Brigt and his family. This is a world wide effort for Bright and you may join Bright Fuh supporters in the USA, UK or Germany and more to come

The Bright Fuh Supporters blog has several pictures of the young boy that show the seriousness of his condition, such as the one on the left taken during the early stages of the tumor's growth. These impressive pictures have moved many Cameroonian bloggers to spread the word about Bright Fuh's case to fundraise and to help him get the operation he needs. For example, Mambe Nanje Churchill who wrote:

My eyes are filled with tears as I cry for this little boy and his parents, I guess its realy hard for them to take it. He is a four year old little boy from Bafut currently in Yaounde because he cant see with his right eye because due to an infection called “Right Orbital Tumor”. This picture is what I saw on his article on and I have never seen something like this before, so we are all called to see how we can help this little boy either by posting his story around or by just donating some funds so that this Cameroonian can live to be our next President, Doctor or Lawyer.

The contributors to the blog include medical doctors, such as the one that provided a medical description of his condition in the first post on the blog:

Bright is a jovial 4 year old, suffering from an aggressive Retinoblastoma, per initial discussions with his doctors in Cameroon. Retinoblastoma is a rare form of cancer that begins in the part of the eye called the retina, which is a thin layer of nerve tissue that enables us to see. Most cases are unilateral (involving only one eye) as in Brightʼs case, but some may be bilateral. If the retinoblastoma spreads, it can spread to the lymph nodes, bones, or the bonemarrow. Rarely, it involves the central nervous system.

The doctor-blogger further indicates what has been done to the boy and what still has to be done to save his life:

In Bright's case, his tumor is unilateral, and per conversations with the doctors taking care of him in Cameroon, it is growing aggressively. He had surgery 2 years ago to remove the tumor but it has recurred with a rather aggressive growth, now involving over half of his face, extending into his facial bone structures and also some involvement of his brain tissue.
We are also informed he began chemo therapy to slow down the growth of this tumor with very little success as you can see from the pictures. At this point, intervention will not only be a shot at improving his quality of life but also at saving his life.

The most recent post has two pictures taken by a journalist from Cameroon's national TV (CRTV), one of them reproduced below, with a note suggesting that Fuh Bright's condition is worsening:

The tumor is visibly larger that what we saw before and he is in a lot of pain and distress. We are asking all supporters of Bright at home and abroad to join forces so that together we can chanel all our energy towards helping this child. Please continue to keep Bright in your prayers, to make a donation for Bright please go to our website and make your kind donation.


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