The eldest son of a Meherpur father, who came under the national media spotlight after his appeal to the deputy commissioner to euthanise his Duchenne muscular dystrophy-affected sons and grandson, died on Saturday.
The deceased Abdus Sabur, 24, was the first in the family to be diagnosed with the incurable ailment in a local hospital. He was 10 years old at the time.
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Tafazzal Hossain took his son, Sabur, to India where the disease was confirmed further. Sabur’s brother Raihan, now 13, and nephew Sourav, now 9, were diagnosed with the disease later on.
The affliction has no known cure and blocks protein production from forming healthy muscles in the body. Gradually, all the muscles in the body waste away and cease to function, leading to a slow death. It is a genetically inherited condition, predominant among males.
The average life expectancy of a person with Duchenne muscular dystrophy is 24 years. There are many different kinds of muscular dystrophy. Symptoms of the most common variety begin in childhood, primarily in boys. Other types do not surface until adulthood.
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The Mumbai-based Neurogen Brain and Spine Institute had reached out to Tofazzal, expressing their interest in treating the three patients, after news of the euthanasia appeal came out.
According to our Meherpur correspondent, the family recently came back after completing a treatment course in the Mumbai institute.
In a January 19 letter to the DC, Tofazzal elaborated his miseries – how he lost his means of livelihood and every scrap of property to keep up with the medical costs.
He had pleaded to euthanise them, to spare the family the growing trauma of watching the three slowly waste away and dragging their family into extreme poverty.
Tofazzal has no means of income, having sold everything in his possession. His wife is also mentally challenged, which has aggravated things considerably.