News Local Health Ministry examining case of little Antonis

Health Ministry examining case of little Antonis

The Health Minister has instructed officials to review the case of a 22 month old infant suffering from a rare disease.

In a written statement on Tuesday, the ministry that it has never been asked to help finance the cost of the treatment of 22 month old Antonis, who is suffering from  Spinal Muscular Atrophy type 1, a rare degenerative disease.

The statement followed appeals for aid by the boy’s family on social media which has led to an outpouring of support from Cyprus and also from abroad.

The ministry clarified that no request had been submitted to cover the costs of the treatment.

It added that the minister has given instructions for the issue to be examined. It noted that the treatment has not been approved by the EU and is not available in EU member states.

The ministry also said that the little boy was the first patient which a special committee approved, as an exception, he be given the pharmaceutical Spiranza at the request of the committee doctor.

Antonis was diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy type 1 at five months. Now, 22-months, he needs help to raise money for an expensive revolutionary treatment in the US which will give him hope for a normal life.

The problem is that the treatment is offered to children up to the age of two, which gives Antonis very little time, and it costs almost 2 million euros.

After obtaining permission from the Interior Ministry, Antoni’s family and friends are trying to raise money for his treatment. Those who wish to help can donate to the following accounts:

Bank of Cyprus
Beneficiary: THOMA CHAR. GIA LOG. ANTONI ANDREOU
Account No: 357032169908
IBAN : CY10 0020 0195 0000 3570 3216 9908
BIC/SWIFT: BCYPCY2N

Hellenic Bank
Beneficiary: THOMA CHARALAMBIA FOR ANDREOU ANTON
Account No: 1051087619801
IBAN : CY44 0050 0105 0001 0510 8761 9801
BIC/SWIFT: HEBACY2N

What is Spinal Muscular Atrophy

Spinal muscular atrophy is a genetic disorder characterised by weakness and wasting (atrophy) in muscles used for movement (skeletal muscles). It is caused by a loss of specialised nerve cells, called motor neurons that control muscle movement. The weakness tends to be more severe in the muscles that are close to the centre of the body (proximal) compared to muscles away from the body’s centre (distal). The muscle weakness usually worsens with age. There are many types of spinal muscular atrophy that are caused by changes in the same genes. The types differ in age of onset and severity of muscle weakness.

Type 1

Spinal muscular atrophy type 1 (also called Werdnig-Hoffmann disease) is the most common form of the condition. It is a severe form of the disorder with muscle weakness evident at birth or within the first few months of life. Most affected children cannot control their head movements or sit unassisted. Children with this type may have swallowing problems that can lead to difficulty feeding and poor growth. They can also have breathing problems due to weakness of respiratory muscles and an abnormally bell-shaped chest that prevents the lungs from fully expanding. Most children with spinal muscular atrophy type I do not survive past early childhood due to respiratory failure.

 

Top Stories

Trump accuses U.S. Health Department watchdog of ‘fake dossier’ on coronavirus

President Donald Trump on Tuesday accused the U.S. Health Department's inspector general of having produced a "fake dossier" on American hospitals suffering shortages on...

5 tons of chloroquine imported from India for Cyprus, Israel

Five tons of API Chloroquine have been imported from India for Cyprus and Israel as part of a joint initiative by the two countries...

106 booked for breaking stay at home decree

Police carrier out checks at 1443 premises islandwide from 6 am to 6 pm on Tuesday and only one was found to be violating...

New York suffers deadliest day in coronavirus crisis

New York has suffered its deadliest day in the novel coronavirus pandemic, with 731 fatalities in the last 24 hours, although Governor Andrew Cuomo...

Cyprus prices dual EMTN Tranche for €1.75 billion

The Republic of Cyprus has priced on Tuesday two new benchmark-sized Euro Medium Term Notes for a total amount of €1.75 bn with Finance...

Taste

Stuffed vine leaves without meat

(Dolmadakia gialantzi) Rinse the leaves and boil in salted water for approximately 10 minutes until soft. Drain and place in some cold water with ice...

Snails with tomato sauce

When the snails are ready, drain them. Fry the onions in the oil and once slightly brown, add the tomatoes. Stir until cooked well...

Sea bream with capers

Clean the sea bream well, add salt and pepper to them and brush them with olive oil. Mix the capers and parsley together as...

Halloumi bread

Sift the flour with the salt into a bowl and mix in the yeast and lemon rind. Make a well in the centre of...