Saturday, March 31, 2018

Home

I have made it home safely.  I am so grateful for all God did on this mission.  I was incredibly busy wearing many hats this trip.  I can not comprehend all God was doing but one thing I know is that I trusted Him and He was faithful to carry me through.

My last week was a bombardment of work.  I spent each day doing what came before me.  the day was started lecturing to the general surgery residents or family practice residents.  We would then move to the operating theater.  We operated on many patients and always seemed to have more cases then the OR could handle.  In between cases I would run to clinic and see patients that the physician's assistant was saving for me to screen for the OR.  after the day there were consults in the wards and many hospital staff with medical questions and needs.  The day never seemed to end.  I poured myself out as long as I could stand.  There was no time to question or worry over the next day.  I trusted that God put before me what He wanted me to do.  He always brought me help when needed.

Isaiah 58:6  Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke?  It is not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter- when you see the naked, to clothe him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?  Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear;  then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.  Then you will call, and the Lord will answer;  you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.



2 1/2 year old girl with CHARGE syndrome.  This is a congenital syndrome that can include abnormalities of the heart, kidneys, ears, eyes and nose.  This child had Choanal Atresia which is blockage of the communication between the nose and the throat.  Infants are obligate nasal breathers so usually children are treated at birth.  This child miraculously survived without treatment.  She was taken to the operating room for surgical opening of her nose.  Stents were placed and will be removed later by the general surgeons.  This will be a life changing procedure for her!









10 year old boy with 3 day history of right eye swelling. this seemed to be precipitated by an upper respiratory infection.  evaluation revealed significant swelling of the right eye and loss of vision.  CT scan of the sinuses revealed sinusitis, large abscess of the orbit and brain abscess.  This process had obviously been going on longer than the history of 3 days.  He went urgently to the operating theater for drainage of the orbital abscess and sinus surgery.  He slowly improved over the next few days but would be in the hospital for continued IV antibiotic treatment for his brain abscess.  Unfortunately, his vision can not be restored but his life was spared







Eldely women who presented to casualty in respiratory distress with stridor.  the illness had been present for 3 weeks according to family.  she was unarousable with low oxygen levels.  Evaluation of the upper airway revealed no obstruction of the airway.  Her chest X-ray was normal.  Something did not match up.  She was worsening and I had no explanation.  I recommended a repeat chest X-ray in the chance that the chest X-ray we were looking at was not of her chest!  repeat chest X-ray revealed collapse of the right lower lung.  She likely had a mucus plug and pneumonia.  I recommended urgent visit to the OR to perform bronchoscopy.  But first I asked her family does she know the Lord? no! we prayed.  When we brought her to the OR there was a brief time where she was awake.  Her life was in danger and I was desperate for her to know the Lord.  The anesthetist knew her language and led her in the salvation prayer.  Surgery went well and she rapidly improved!






There are so many more stories that I could tell.  Please know that the Lord was ministering to His people in many ways this trip.  I am resting now and am amazed at how this trip's recovery has been so much easier than previous trips.  He is blessing me and healing me.

Chase Miller

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Life at Tenwek

Joshua 1:9  Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and courageous.  Do not be terrified, do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.

It has continued to be a battle here.  I am encouraged by the words in Joshua that the Lord is with me.  It has felt a little like trying to walk in quick sand.  But God has been faithful and I felt a real breakthrough on Friday.  I arrived to Tenwek with multiple obstacles to care.  But God has been overcoming them one by one.  It has been one of the busiest trips I have had yet.  I am teaching the second year family practice residents as well as a general surgery resident.  I have operated everyday except my first day so getting the patients seen and scheduled for surgery has been a challenge.  It has been a bombardment of work.  when I showed up for a meal on friday night everyone clapped because I have missed so many meals!

1 Peter 4:12  Do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you.  But rejoice that you participate in the suffering of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when His Glory is revealed.  If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the spirit of glory and of God rests on you.

I am rejoicing in all that God is doing.  There have been many salvations.  Many who have been healed through surgery.  Many who are encouraged.

30 year old HIV+ male with tuberculosis and toxoplasmosis.  he presented with drainage from the left ear.  exam was consistent with probable TB infection of the ear.  he was saddened and ill appearing.  suffering.  His sickness is of death but we discussed the Lord and the assurance he needs of eternal life.  He so desperately wanted more.  He repented and gave his life to the lord.  We rejoice in the ultimate healing.  He will be treated for TB and hopefully this will treat some of his underlying issues.






Elderly female with moderate to severe hearing loss.  I had screened her hearing on my fall trip.  She came in this year with her daughter.  we fit her with donated hearing aids.  she was overjoyed by the ability to hear again.  Her daughter was taught on how to use the aids.  this was a big process but in the end they left rejoicing with the gift of hearing!







35 year old male with left parotid mass.  this has been steadily growing in size.  He had very subtle loss of movement of the face on the affected side.  these signs suggested malignancy.  CT scan imaging was indicative of large mass involving the salivary gland.  On friday he underwent removal of the mass and salivary gland.  Prior to the surgery we always pray.  God revealed to me that He would be present.  He would be the surgeon.  It was a very difficult surgery because of the large mass and difficulty identifying the nerve that moves the face.  But we persisted.  We thanked God when the instruments were not available, when the power went off, and when the cautery machine did not work.  The mass was successfully removed and the patient is recovering well.   All honor and Glory to God!

Thank you for your continued prayers.  Please pray I can continue to lean on Him and not be overwhelmed by the endless flood of work.  That the enemy would be unable to distract me or wear me down.

Chase miller

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Migori

My time at Migori, Kenya has come to a close.  I praise the Lord that He was in control of all the details.  The enemy was working hard to derail our work.  As mentioned previously many of the team were detained in their travels.  One precious women started her travels on Wednesday morning and arrived Sunday night.  She was such a witness to His protection.  As she arrived Sunday night she came in thanking the Lord for all the angels on the way that guided her to safety.  There was a spirit there that wanted to disqualify me.  It was a difficult time.

God faithfully brought me all the help I needed.  I had 2 Kenyan general surgery residents who are quite gifted.  We saw the usual parade of head and neck masses.  We operated on large thyroid goiters, salivary gland tumor, neck cysts, and a congenital mass involving the ear.  All in all the team did 48 surgeries and saw 318 patients.  It was a busy week for sure.  But God has been constantly reminding me that it is not about performance but the heart.  I want to focus on my hearts cry.  I loved each patient and shared a prayer over each one.  I am believing that He is blessing them now and caring for these precious people.

There were 2 patients that I especially felt God ministered to.  One was a young 13 year old girl who presented with her elderly mother (appeared to be grandmother).  She had been having nasal bleeding.  She was in pain and had swelling involving her face and nose and she was suffering and discouraged.  We addressed the medical issue and did a nasal biopsy for what I am sure is a malignant form of sarcoma.  I addressed my concerns  and shared with her the ultimate healer, Jesus.  She did not know Him but so wanted his love and healing.  She readily gave her life to him.  I watched as she slowly walked out of the clinic, it will be at least 4 weeks before the results of the biopsy will be available and will she even be able to travel to get the results?  My heart bleeds for her but yet I rejoice that her eternal life is secure.

Joseph was an elderly man who presented with multiple masses over his body.  He had AIDS and obvious wasting of his body, with end stage signs.  He had more that one tumor of his face, neck and along his chest.  Surgery was not the answer.  I shared the seriousness of his disease and the importance of knowing Jesus.  He so desired a new life and readily repented and gave his life to the Lord.  Our prayer was powerful and you could feel the change occurring over his life.  He was a new creation in Christ Jesus.  We rejoiced with the angels over this one!

I have arrived to Tenwek Hospital now after another 8 hour drive.  We were detained by flooding.  We had 3 instances where we needed to cross what looked like a river.  It is by God's grace that we did not spend the night in the car waiting for the water to recede.  I am preparing for my time here teaching the family practice residents.  There are many obstacles to clear.  Recent fire and multiple anesthetists have left the hospital over financial issues.  This will affect what surgeries can be done.  I appreciate your prayers that the enemy will be unable to detain the work that needs to be done.

No photos could be uploaded as internet is weak,
Blessings,
chase


Friday, March 2, 2018

Arrived safely to Nairobi

Luke 9:23 Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.  For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it.

My travels were uneventful except for a tight connection in Dubai.  My luggage made it and by the Grace of God we were not searched at the border in Kenya.  Many of the team members did not have such an easy time.  a snow storm in Europe detained many flights.  4 team members will arrive to Migori 1 day late but all will make it thank the Lord.  We are on our 8 hour drive to Migori now.

Yesterday as I awaited a flight the Lord's presence was with me, probably because of all the saints praying for my safe travels.  There was such a strong sense that I was about to enter into SUFFERING.   A suffering of my physical body yes but a deeper suffering.  As I meditated in His presence it became clear.  I am entering into the suffering of others.  their pain, sickness, needs, desperation.  I am insufficient to carry their burdens or to meet the needs.  I don't have the knowledge or skills, but He does.  He is the answer to their pain and suffering.  Jesus enters into the suffering places.  If we want to walk with Him we will join Him in these places of suffering, poverty and need.  He will meet every need and we will be witnesses to the ends of the earth.

My prayer is that He will help me carry the burdens and He will meet the needs.  I pray that each patient receives a healing touch from the Living Presence of God.  I pray that each team member will draw closer to Him and lean on Him.

Thank you Lord in advance for all that you are going to do.  I pray that my praise of your Honor and Glory overcomes my deepest fears.

Amen
chase miller

Sunday, February 4, 2018

It is hard to believe it is time to travel back to Kenya again. I am anticipating a blessed time working in several rural regions of Kenya.  I leave February 28th to travel to Migori, Kenya on the Tanzania border.  This will be an intensely busy trip as we operate on thyroid goiters and other ear, nose and throat masses.  Several African residents from the Tenwek Hospital PAACS program will be joining me there.  I am grateful that God has confirmed to me that He is in charge and he has a mighty work to do there. I also look forward to seeing Faith who is a Maasai orphan that we support at the local orphanage in Migori.

I will then head north to Tenwek Hospital March 10th to teach the family practice residents.  This was a wonderful trip last spring as God opened a new door.  The Lord had prepared many hearts to receive Him on that trip.  We will be seeing patients in clinic and operating on those in need.  I trust the Lord has much work for us to do.  I am hoping to continue to grow the hearing ministry.  On our last trip an Ipad audiometer was delivered for hearing screening.  We now have 19 hearing aids to dispense to those in need.

Jimmy and Aaron will be meeting me at Tenwek hospital during Aaron’s spring break time.  Jimmy will be working primarily at orphanages and schools to supply clean water filtration.  Aaron will be helping in the hospital and at the schools with Jimmy.

We are in need of your prayer coverage for our travels.  That He will go before us and make a way.  That He will strengthen us for all He has for us to do.  Tax-Free Donations can be made through  our new web site at www.purewaterforafrica.org to the following projects-
                                                                                                              

1) Hearing aid needs including ear molds, tubing, and batteries.  1 year of batteries costs $30.

2) Kitoben Orphanage building project.  We are now working on classrooms for grades 6-8 and teacher's living quarters.

3) Water Filters.  1 filter for $40 provides clean water for a family for a life time
      
       Thank you for all your support,
              Chase Miller                                                                                          


Sunday, October 29, 2017

Arrived home safely

patients catching some sun outside the ward


We have arrived home safely.  Thank you for all the prayers amongst the turmoil  of the Kenyan reelection process.  We felt safe but there were daily protests mainly in areas of support for the contestant.  the reelection occurred and there was a poor turnout.  this could effect the validity of the election and destabilize Kenya further.  Please keep them in your prayers.

I left my heart in Kenya again!  I have such a love for the people there.  I know that comes from the Lord and I am grateful that he continues to call me to serve the people there.  It was a shortened visit this year because of the elections but despite this much work was done.  there were some unusual cases as usual this year.  My cry to the Lord is please show me who you would have me care for.  some many of the problems are difficult to treat.  The people come trusting for their cure.  That is tough to carry.  I must constantly remind myself that God has brought me there and will never leave my side.  I remember asking a long term missionary once, "how do you know what to take on and what not to?"  so many of the surgical cases are far advanced disease.  and he said, "test the waters and if God equips you, you will know what He is call you to."  This year God showed me clearly that He will never leave me alone and will provide me with all the help needed.  I was working way beyond my own strength.

"MY GRACE IS SUFFICIENT FOR MY POWER IS MADE PERFECT IN WEAKNESS"
2 Corinthians 12:9

We started the hearing program at Tenwek.  We have tried several times in the past to get this off the ground but this year the system is working well.  We are performing audiograms on an IPad.  the audiograms will get emailed to me for formal reads.  I have trained our ENT physicians assistant and all seems to be running well.  I already have 1 patient waiting for hearing aid fitting which we will start in March.

testing hearing in elderly kenyan

This patient was one of many who had unresectable cancer.  he presented with hoarseness.  there was a large laryngeal mass involving the voice box and the entire back of the tongue.  In the kenyan culture the diagnosis is discussed with the sons.  they are the ones that will tell the patient when they feel he is ready.  they had traveled 8 hours to hear this news and it was heart breaking.  We prayed for them and the son carried the news silently back on the long journey home.

one of many with unresectable cancer
This patient had a rare tumor of a minor salivary gland in the cheek region.  these are usually malignant but this mass was removed without difficulty and appeared benign.

rare minor salivary gland tumor
Young child with mother in traditional Maasai garb.  they had traveled from the border of Tanzania for airway obstruction from enlarged tonsils and adenoids.

Maasai child for adenotonsillectomy

This patient underwent a hemimandibulectomy for malignant mandible tumor.  I was concerned about adequate equipment and the ability to completely remove the tumor as it extended up into the upper jaw.  The day of surgery the mass was noticeably smaller and resection went well.  she was reconstructed with a plate without difficulty.  Praise the Lord!

large mandibular amelioblastoma

Thank you again for all your prayers.  The enemy was working hard to prevent this work but "He that is in me is greater than he that is in the world"

chase miller



Saturday, October 14, 2017

Christ redeems the curse

I am amazed how God can so wonderfully reverse a curse.  I have written before how the cleft lip and palate deformity are considered a curse here in Kenya.  Many mothers are ostracized from their tribe if they bare a child with these deformities.  it is thought to be due to the sin of the mother.  these shamed mothers and their precious children come desperate to ENT camp at AIC CURE hospital in Kijabe for surgery.  this year we had a team of 7 physicians, nurse anaesthetist, OR nurse, and tech who teamed up with the Kenyan staff to perform 49 surgeries.  We were the draw but the real work was spiritual.  the women were encouraged daily with the Gospel and word of Christ.  on discharge day a blessing ceremony was held and the mother's had a name changing opportunity where the child's name was changed to represent the curse being changed to a blessing.  Mother's praised the blessing of the Lord and the opportunity to have their shame removed.  We had a group of 9 muslim women from Daddab refugee camp.  Although they stood quietly and hid their feelings I know that seeds were planted.  My heart continues to break for these women.  they live in the world's largest refugee camp- 500,000 somalian people just across the border in eastern Kenya.  the health care they receive is minimal.  We did a cleft palate repair on a 16 year old girl this trip.

Incomplete cleft lip from refugee camp
post op photo








I am now at Tenwek Hospital working with the general surgery team.  I have seen many patients.  Some of them I have seen previously.  Many again have unresectable cancers.  One such man traveled with his son from the region of Migori, near Tanzania.  he was told in July he had cancer.  The mass is now so large he is unable to swallow and he is losing weight rapidly.  he has a large tumor of the voice box involving the entire back of his tongue.  Surgery would be more than he could physically endure in his wasted condition.  His son will take him home now.  In this culture the diagnosis is not discussed with the elderly patient but only with the family.  the family will determine when it is time to discuss with the patient.  We prayed and supported the son and I am always amazed how thankful the kenyans are despite their difficult circumstances.  This is one of many I have had to tell they have untreatable cancer.

Elderly man with unresectable cancer
12 Kg baby who underwent adenotonsillectomy for airway obstruction


Despite many sad circumstances there are many diseases that I have been able to treat.  We have removed several rare conditions including nasopalatine cyst and buccal cheek mass.  Facial abscess has been drained and mandibular cyst treated.  Adenotonsillectomy on failure to thrive 1.5 year old. We have started testing hearing and this is going well.  Hopefully, hearing aids will be dispensed at my next visit. Thank you for all the donations as these funds have paid for 4 of the surgeries so far.



In Christ,
Chase Miller