VIJAYAWADA: It was a special day for young IT professional B Chaitanya from Hyderabad. The lifesaver of seven-year-old Yoka Sarwesh from Tamil Nadu greeted the child for the first time on Wednesday.Yoka’s life changed after he received Chaitanya’s blood stem cells and since then, the child did not need blood transfusions any more.In an event organised by Datri organisation, which connects donors of stem cells with recipients, Minister for Health and Medical education Kamineni Srinivas Rao congratulated B Chaitanya for this novel step.
Yoka hails from Dindigul and was diagnosed with thalassemia when he was just four-months-old. Since then, he has been put under regular blood transfusion for over six years, until he found the matching donor.
Speaking to Express, Rati Devi, mother of Yoka, said, “I was shattered when I got to know that my son has thalassemia. For almost six years, we hunted for a matching donor. Being his parents, even our stem cells didn’t match. Almost 20 people, comprising friends and relatives, opted to be donors, but none of their cells matched Yoka’s. We came across a donor after two years of diagnosing, but his health condition didn’t permit transfusion. For almost four years, we waited and at last, with the help of Datri, we came across a perfect matching donor and all went smoothly. Six years after the birth of Yoka, we finally had a smile on our face. But today, after meeting the donor, I saw the messenger of god.” said Rati Devi, who broke down into tears while recalling her gruelling struggle.
Chaitanya, a 32 year-old IT professional, came across Datri through an awareness session. “I was very happy to hear that I was a potential match for someone. With strong support from my family and the thought of saving a life, with no questions and doubts in mind, I went ahead and donated stem cells. Now, after meeting Yoka, I can’t express my happiness in words seeing him happy and healthy. This is certainly one of the biggest joys of my life and I would really encourage people to become donors and save lives.” said Chaitanya.