Friday, October 10, 2008
A Pop Singer With Failed Kidneys
Being a perennial skeptical about email money appeals, a message about Alamgir’s health and plea to wire transfer money to a bank account made me decide to check the veracity of the news. I looked up Alamgir’s telephone number in Georgia and called him up. Luck was with me, I was able to talk directly to Alamgir in quite detail. Here is what I gathered from our telephone conversation.
In 2004, Alamgir was diagnosed with failing kidneys. At that time his kidneys were operating at 50% of their capacity. The kidneys kept deteriorating in their performance and by now they are almost useless. Alamgir needs a kidney transplant, but till he finds new kidneys he would have to go through dialysis, the process of machine-cleaning the blood. For the dialysis to start he went through a surgery on Monday, October 6, at Gwinnett Medical Center, Lawrenceville. In that surgery Alamgir was fitted with a dialysis catheter. Once the surgical wound is dried up, Alamgir’s dialysis through the catheter would start. Since Alamgir has permanent renal failure, he would go through another surgery in which he would be fitted with surgically created arteriovenous fistula, a preferred approach for dialysis. Surgically created arteriovenous fistula is apparently a more involved surgery and is hence delayed till the patient is in better health through dialysis made possible through catheter.
The main reason Alamgir landed in financial trouble is because he was not carrying any health insurance. Although he sounded fatigued Alamgir spoke with optimism.
He said many Pakistani doctors currently living in the US were studying at either Sindh or Dow Medical College when he was at the peak of his career. They were his friends and he was happy to see them coming to his help. Just a day ago he received a call from Ishrat-Ul-Ibad, Governor of Sindh, who extended his support to Alamgir especially if Alamgir would come to Pakistan for further treatment. Alamgir said he is consulting his doctors for the best approach to take. Currently he is being helped by his wife; Alamgir’s son is studying in Virginia.
So, yes the news about Alamgir’s ailment and the appeal for financial help are authentic. Money should be sent directly to Alamgir's bank account as given in the email message.
Alamgir’s photo, courtesy of DesiSongs.us