May 28, 2022
A collage image of Rosemary Odinga posing for a photo (left) and Raila Odinga helping her walk during a past event (right).
  • Doctors at Sreedhareeyam Ayurvedic Eye Hospital in India believed in restoring Rosemary Odinga’s eyesight, long before meeting her. 

    Nonetheless, they hinged their belief and expertise on a small ray of hope and had to first convince her father, Azimio La Umoja presidential aspirant, Raila Odinga, that they were best suited to end her daughter’s plight. 

    Dr Sreekanth Namboothri, who was part of the team that operated on Rosemary in South India, spoke exclusively to kenyagist.com, on her journey to recovery.  

    A collage image of Rosemary Odinga posing for a photo (left) and Raila Odinga helping her walk during a past event (right).
    File

    Convincing Raila

    Rosemary’s sister, Winnie Odinga, played a key role in her recovery. 

    Winnie, who has also played an active role in her father’s politics, took the lead in her trip abroad, reviewed the doctor’s in-depth analysis and was the one who convinced Raila to test the traditional Indian treatment known as Ayurveda. 

    But how did Winnie find out that the Indian treatment was better than South Africa’s and Israel’s where Rosemary was first treated to no avail

    Raila Odinga’s well-wisher and friend based in India, Byragoni Sreenivas Goud, played a key role in facilitating the whole process. 

    He first visited Sreedhareeyam, the world-renowned Ayurvedic Hospital in July 2019 and met with the panel of doctors led by Dr Narayanan Namboothiri (Chief Physician), Dr Sreekala Namboothiri (Deputy Chief Physician) and Dr Sreekanth Namboothiri (Chief Medical Officer). 

    “We asked for detailed medical reports of Rosemary. Mr Byragoni collected the medical records from Winnie Odinga. Byragoni was very much convinced that our hospital is a pioneer Ayurvedic Hospital specialising in Ophthalmology – the study of medical conditions relating to the eye. 

    “After a thorough examination of the reports, I communicated the possible prognosis of the disease to Winnie Odinga. I assured her that there is a small ray of hope with which the power of Ayurveda can be exploited,†Dr Sreekanth told kenyagist.com

    The ophthalmologist was confident that he could prevent further deterioration of vision, and can make the vision stable first and then improve it gradually, correct the colour perception and field vision. 

    After developing confidence in Sreedhareeyam and its treatment modalities, Winnie Odinga and her father agreed to send Rosemary to India. The family believed that this was the last hope for their daughter. 

    “Mr Byragoni was very instrumental in guiding Rosemary to the correct place for the cure which is Sreedhareeyam. He was the key figure in bringing the two poles together for a noble cause of bringing back the lost vision,†Dr Sreekanth lauded Raila’s well-wisher. 

    Raila Odinga’s well-wisher Mr Byragoni Sreenivas Goud (right) speaks with Rosemary Odinga (left) in India
    Raila Odinga’s well-wisher Mr Byragoni Sreenivas Goud (right) speaks with Rosemary Odinga (left) in India
    courtesy

    First Treatment 

    Rosemary travelled to the hospital in Koothattukulam, Kerala for the first time in July 2019. At that time, the attending doctors noted that her vision was almost nil. 

    She could only recognise people with touch and was not able to perform her daily activities without the support of others. 

    Raila, in a past interview, revealed that his daughter lost her vision due to a stroke and tumour in 2017 leading to optic nerve damage. Apart from Israel and South Africa as aforementioned, the family had also sought a cure in Germany and China.

    Rosemary underwent treatment at Sreedhareeyam Ayurvedic Eye Hospital and Research Centre under the supervision of Dr Narayanan Namboothiri (Chief Physician), Dr Sreekala. N.P (Deputy Chief Physician) and Dr Sreekanth. P. Namboothiri (Chief Medical Officer). 

    “At the time of admission, Rosemary could not identify her doctors and caregivers, she merely recognised us by their voice and touch. Her vision was almost to the bare minimum. Soon after the first course of treatment, her vision got stable and there was a notable improvement in her field of vision. 

    “The team of doctors at Sreedhareeyam elucidated the Ayurvedic diet and regimen that had to be followed throughout the course of treatment to her. This diet was very much different from the cuisine in Kenya,†the doctor noted. 

    But Rosemary had pledged to get her vision back. With her immense willpower and determination, she followed all the advice of her doctors. 

    Three months after the first course of treatment, she noticed a significant improvement in the quality of vision. 

    She was able to recognize the colour of her bedsheet and read the messages popping up on her phone. There was a remarkable improvement even from the first visit itself.

    Breakout of the Pandemic 

    Due to the travel restrictions imposed during the pandemic, Rosemary could not visit Sreedhareeyam in the following year. 

    Her doctors and family members, however, remained very supportive. 

    The medics at Sreedhareeyam Hospital continuously tracked her progress and were advising treatment and medicines from time to time according to her condition online. She was given custom made medicines, which were prepared at Sreedhareeyam Hospital to ensure their quality.

    Her family was reported to have been very excited to see the progress made by her. In order to meet her doctors in person and thank them, Raila Odinga accompanied her to the hospital in February 2022.

    Azimio La Umoja presidential aspirant and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga in India in February 2022.
    Azimio La Umoja presidential aspirant and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga in India in February 2022.
    courtesy

    Second Treatment and Recovery 

    The prime objective of the second course of in-patient treatment was to improve her vision further, according to her doctors. The duration of the treatment was 21 days. 

    Her treatment protocol for this course of treatment was planned by three most experienced doctors at Sreedhareeyam, Narayanan, Sreekala and Anjaly Sreekanth. 

    The doctors also noted a huge difference in her first and second trips. 

    “When she came for the first time in 2019, she was not able to see her doctors, she could only recognize them through their voices. But the entire scenario was a bit different this time. 

    “She could perceive the corporal forms of her saviours, the doctors and staff of Sreedhareeyam Hospital. She was overwhelmed with emotions when she saw Dr Sreekanth in physical form for the first time and words couldn’t express that touching moment. She cried with joy, ‘Dr Sreekanth this time I could see you’,†the doctor recalls. 

    After the two courses of treatment, there was a significant improvement in her vision. She was able to perform her daily activities herself without the help of others. 

    She recognized colours and her field of vision improved. 

    Kenya's former Prime Minister Raila Odinga (left) and India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi (right) in India on February 13, 2022
    Kenya’s former Prime Minister Raila Odinga (left) and India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi (right) in India on February 13, 2022
    Twitter
    Raila Odinga
  • Source: KENYAGIST.COM

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