George Mmbanguseni Munzhelele of Matshavhawe village in Dzimauli, Limpopo, is suffering from a strange illness that has been “eating” his fingers and toes for years.

Speaking from his one-roomed mud house on the banks of Tshala River, Munzhelele said he could hardly remember when he started losing his fingers.

“When this problem started, I felt itchy on my left hand. When I scratched it, it started swelling.

“From there, my fingers started disappearing into my hand one by one,” he said.

Today Munzhelele is left with only one toe on his left leg.

“It’s tough. I cannot do anything by myself and I stay alone in this house,’€ said Munzhelele whose wife left him when the problem started.

“I have no one to help me except a lady who cooks and clean for me. I pay her R500 per month from my pension grant for the generosity she is showing,” said Munzhelele while adding that he has been in and out of local hospitals, Tshilidzini and Vhufululi with no success.

Munzhelele said he was living a lonely life because people do not want to come near him because of the bad smell that comes from the sores in his hands and leg.

His elder sister, said she does not understand the illness.

“I was staying with him when this problem started. When I asked him what was happening, he kept on saying he had wood splinters in his hand. But when we tried to remove these splinters, there was nothing.

“Since then, my brother lost his fingers and toes one by one. Sometime he oozes blood from all the openings including his nostrils. So what type of disease is that?,’€ she said.

The ailing Munzhelele said: “I will appreciate any help than can come as long as I get cure.”

“I am in a very bad condition. I had never seen anyone suffering from this type of illness except me.

“I have accepted myself, that is why I stay in my house with my three dogs as the only company I have,’€ he said.- OurHealth/Health-e News Service

Story and pictures by Ndivhuwo Musetha, an OurHealth Citizen Journalist reporting from Thohoyandou in the Vhembe health district in Limpopo.

Author

  • Health-e News

    Health-e News is South Africa's dedicated health news service and home to OurHealth citizen journalism. Follow us on Twitter @HealtheNews