News and photos have been making rounds on social media about a disease that is currently ruining the lives of children in North Eastern Kenya, specifically Wajir. I wouldn’t want to share the photos for fear of causing trauma. Let me keep you from the trauma.
Ichthyosis is a rare yet a dangerous skin disorder. One’s skin becomes so dry and scales out. It’s like a slough though accompanied with pain and thick peels. The disease manifests itself during birth and within the first year after birth. It advances and kills faster.
Horrible skin disease
This disease is incurable but moisturizers are advisable for use. In areas that are dry and hot like the North Eastern parts of Kenya, the situation can get chronic as the weather helps to accelerate the sloughing. Children are currently dying of the disease in the areas.
According to the Ichthiosys Foundation and Related Skin Types, the disease kills around three hundred people around the world. They have figured out that it is caused by a genetic mutation from the mother to child. In some instances the parents may not show symptoms of the disease or exhibit the problems but can carry the genes. In case the child’s immune system cannot suppress the disease, they will suffer from it till death.
Other problems associated with the disease is the pathological appearance of the skin. In the advanced stage, the parents and children alike will suffer psychological trauma, isolation and esteem issues. It is a wish that it is discovered and maintained through means that other people who were affected by it had applied in the past.
In Kenya, the government’s department of health should intervene and find a solution to this problem. I know of the challenges that could result because of the little research about the disease. However, in partnership with other superior medical institutions, it can be tamed. But in Kenya most things fail because of corruption and incompetence.