2 dengue victims and 1 cure – tawa-tawa
this dengue story happened three years ago and I wrote this to share the experience with members of a yahoogroup composed of parents of my son’s batch when he was in grade 7. I wrote and shared it so that other parents in the batch of my son could be warned and perhaps learn and benefit from my experience with dengue.
there was a palpable dengue scare in the country at the time I wrote this with many dengue cases and dengue related deaths reported. the infection rate at that time was high and rising.
the write up is mostly intact from the original with a few things added for clarity and more details.
it’s important to note that I am writing this just as a regular parent of children who got dengue. I am not a doctor and my profession and background is not even related to any medical field. the information contained here are the things that I knew then and remember now and may or may not be correct from a medical standpoint.
this narration is purely anecdotal, without any scientific or medical basis or proof. if dengue infects you or members of your family, you must consult a doctor immediately. you must discuss, consult and get the agreement of the dengue patient’s attending physician for any action you will take as a result of reading this blog entry.
this is my dengue story:
the nightmare called dengue is done and over with for my family, thank God! i just want to share a few things.
my son has fully recovered from dengue after being in the hospital for a week. but it was a double whammy for us as my daughter, my eldest and “ate” to my son had dengue too and was hospitalized just 2 days after my son was confined. both are already out of the hospital and fully recovered. thank God twice.
my whole family are now full converts of tawa-tawa, the “rumored” herbal cure for dengue. based on our twin experiences, tawa-tawa as
a cure for dengue is for real.
this is our dengue experience:
one week-end, my son at night complained of very high fever. i needed to stay on a bed that was beside his to watch over him. even though it was the first night of high fever, he was unable to sleep and kept on complaining of feeling very hot. there was nothing I could do to relieve him of the fever with the medicine given to him does not seem to be working. he had terrible chills and was shaking almost the whole night and gave a low moan because of the fever.
the next day, a Monday, we decided to take him to the hospital as we thought the high fever was very unusual. after two hours at the emergency room, we were shocked to find out that he had dengue. we immediately had him confined at the hospital.
as soon as I had the time, i did internet research and read through those sent to the yahoogroup by other parents on the cure for dengue. i found a lot of anecdotal evidence, mostly testimonies on how tawa-tawa has cured dengue from the internet and the philippine press. I thought that was worth a try.
anticipating that i might eventually use tawa-tawa, i had the plant bought from the Manila Seedling Bank in quezon city. we bought the actual plant itself as we wanted to make sure we get the real thing.
a group of nuns and priests took it upon themselves to plant and propagate tawa-tawa at the Manila Seedling Bank so that residents of metro manila may be able to have them when needed. the tawa-tawa plant came with preparation instructions on how to make a tawa-tawa tea drink and placed the concoction in the refrigerator.
i discussed it with my wife but she was not convinced on it. i printed the stuff i got from the internet and left it in the hospital room for her to read.
we also talked to my son’s doctor about it. the doctor, being a woman of science and medicine of course was not for it. her main concern for not agreeing to it was the lack of scientific or formal studies on its efficacy and more importantly the zero knowledge on its side effects. i understood that to her side effects are key issues as being my son’s doctor she will need to face these if they occur.
it is actually side effects of dengue that doctors are watching for. dengue affects the internal organs and it is the damage and failure of the internal organs that patients die from, not from dengue per se.
i mentioned to the doctor what i read from news reports – that the DOH (department of health) is actually not rejecting its use as long as tawa-tawa is taken together with medicines the doctor prescribes. also, i mentioned that the DOH has said they are in the process of looking into it. they also recognize that they have been receiving numerous anecdotal evidence on the efficacy of tawa-tawa on dengue patients.
my son’s 50 year old yaya who has been with us when my son was just a few months old have told us that she and her family have been using tawa-tawa for fever since she can remember. her family are farmers near the mountains in mindanao and it was there where she grew up. where they lived was pretty remote and they had very little health care from doctors and hospitals. they relied very much on herbal cures like tawa-tawa which was abundant where they lived and were for free.
one of the other cures mentioned by the parents in the yahoogroup was papaya leaves extract which I also mentioned to the doctor. the doctor gave me what i thought was a reasonable explanation why the papaya leaves extract might not work.
i told the doctor the vitamin k in the papaya leaves extract is the one that help platelets to increase. the doctor told me there are two components in the platelet and the one that vitamin k helps is not the one that dengue affects, thus rendering vitamin k as not helpful in fighting dengue.
since i was the only one who wanted to use tawa-tawa, with both my wife and the doctor unconvinced, we decided not to give my children tawa-tawa. in other words, I was out voted two to one.
both my children were already at the hospital at that time these discussions were being made. my son was in the hospital 2 days ahead of my daughter but my daughter’s platelet levels were much lower than my son’s. it appeared that my daughter had a more severe case of dengue.
they had been in the hospital for a few days and both their platelet levels continued to go down seemingly without stop. the increase in platelets is what we want to happen for dengue patients. the internal organs of the patient might be damaged once the platelet levels go down to a certain level. platelet levels are constantly monitored via twice a day blood analysis, one in the morning and the other early evening.
one morning at around 5 am, while i was preparing to go to the hospital, i got a text from my wife at asking me to bring the tawa-tawa tea preparation to the hospital. i thought it meant she had agreed to give both my kids the tawa-tawa cure. i did not know what made her change her mind but I was happy she did.
in the spirit of full disclosure, we told the doctor we will go ahead and give our children tawa-tawa tea. in other words, we were really not asking for her permission, we were just informing her about it. she agreed although we really did not give her any other option.
i gave both kids tawa-tawa at breakfast, i gave my son 30 ml of it while my daughter 90 ml. my son had less as he was mostly asleep in the morning and could hardly drink anything while my daughter was mostly awake in the mornings.
the results of the blood test taken at the end of the day when my kids drank tawa-tawa tea in the morning showed that the platelet levels of my kids went up, although they were minimal. i was very happy as that was the first blood tests both my kids had that showed the platelet counts increase, the relentless downtrend was finally reversed. my daughter’s platelets increased much more than my son’s , maybe because i gave her more tawa-tawa than i did my son?
the doctor was also surprised as the impact was very quick, with just one dose of the tawa-tawa tea. she even asked me how much i gave them and i told her the amount.
unfortunately, my daughter had severe stomach pains that evening. my wife got worried that it might be a side effect of the tawa-tawa since that was the only new thing we gave our daughter.
but the doctor was not alarmed as she explained that stomach pains like the ones my daughter was experiencing is expected with dengue patients. in fact to many patients stomach pains was one of the first symptoms to show.
but since we really do not know anything about tawa-tawa, we decided to stop giving my kids the tawa-tawa tea. we wanted to err on the side of caution.
watching my daughter have stomach pains was very difficult for me. she had it almost during the whole day and it showed she was having a lot of difficulty with it. unfortunately there was not much that can be done to relieve her of it except for warm compress placed on her stomach.
in the meantime, on an internet search, my wife found out there are tawa-tawa capsules being sold at Tiendesitas in pasig. i immediately went to Tiendesitas and bought a whole bottle of tawa-tawa capsules for P380.
we went through the search as my children were having difficulty drinking the tawa-tawa tea. dengue patients do not want to eat or drink anything, even water. I had tasted the tawa-tawa tea and it had no taste, it was almost like water. it was not the taste that prevented my children from drinking it, it was the dengue that made them not to want to drink in fact anything. they can only tolerate very little intake of any liquid. the tawa-tawa capsules we thought would solve this issue.
dengue is really an awful disease to have. there is no cure for it and all you needed to do was wait for it to take its course. doctors monitor the patient for side effects or what it might be doing to the internal organs of the patient.
platelet levels seem to be on a constant spiral downward and what you wait is for it to reach bottom and it goes back up to normal levels. the hope is that the body is somehow able to to learn to fight dengue at the time when the platelet levels are not to low to hurt the internal organs.
the other awful part and this is the most disturbing is that dengue patients do not want to eat or drink at all. and yet it is drinking water that they need the most.
since my son was not having any stomach pains, we gave him the tawa-tawa capsules 3 times a day but did not give my daughter any being afraid tawa-tawa might be affecting her stomach.
after giving my son tawa-tawa capsules for 2 to 3 days, he was discharged from the hospital with his platelet levels clearly trending up already and at healthy levels. the impact of the tawa-tawa was that quick.
in the meantime, my daughter to whom we stopped giving tawa-tawa to had her platelets continue to go down again. it went to such a low level that the doctor had alerted the nursing staff to be ready to give her a blood transfusion should the level reach a certain level.
then one early morning, my daughter’s urine had some blood in it. blood in the urine may mean one or some of her internal organs are bleeding or are being affected by dengue. our doctor also told us that more blood in her urine will trigger the need for blood transfusion. a blood transfusion means she would be crossing to a new lower level in her battle with dengue.
aside from the twice a day blood tests, we were also asked to look at the stool and keep the urine of my kids in a container. we report it to the nurse who in turn inspect them for anything unusual. we also record the amount of liquid intake and urine expelled by my children. i guess this will tell them if the bodies of my children were expelling more liquid than taking them in.
spooked by the blood on my daughter’s urine, my wife gave my daughter the tawa-tawa capsules. i suppose she was on a desperate mode. we so much wanted to avoid blood transfusion.
in other words, she resumed the tawa-tawa cure. after just two days of the tawa-tawa capsules, my daughter was discharged from the hospital as her platelet levels were reversed and started to go up and reach healthy levels.
this is no scientific study and i am not a doctor. with these experiences though, i am swearing by the ability of tawa-tawa to cure dengue based.
i had witnessed two cases of dengue that were happening at the same time where it looks like tawa-tawa made the difference and was the one that cured both.
- on both kids, platelets increased after 1 dose.
- on both kids, after 2 to 3 days of tawa-tawa, they got discharged from the hospital.
- one child that had continuous tawa-tawa treatment was discharged earlier and only after 2-3 days while the other child on whom tawa-tawa treatment was stopped, platelets resumed its drop
- when the tawa-tawa cure was resumed using the capsules, the downtrend of her platelet level was reversed and she was discharged from the hospital soon after
one more question that might be in your mind – how did my children get dengue at the same time?
they study in different schools, so that leaves just our house as the source of their dengue infection or from a place that they went to together. this was answered by a phone call from my daughter’s school.
my daughter studies at a girl’s high school in pasig. her teacher called the house to ask how my daughter was doing when the school got to know she had dengue. it was in fact very nice of the teacher to
take time to ask about my daughter.
the teacher asked me an interesting question – did my daughter go to my son’s school recently?
this teacher knew my daughter had a younger brother studying at a school on katipunan st., quezon city. i asked why she asked the question – she said there is another girl in my daughter’s school who recently had dengue who went to my son’s school during the bonfire celebration for the historic win of the basketball team of my son’s school. she said the parents suspected this girl got dengue from my son’s school.
and yes, my son and my daughter did go to my son’s school during the bonfire celebration, the same one that girl from my daughter’s school went to.
i was with them during that time, but I was hardly with them. they stayed in different places at the bonfire celebration with their friends while I stayed with the parents apart from them.
aside from the information the teacher gave me, the doctor at the emergency room at the hospital where we took my children also mentioned the school of my son as a hot spot for dengue infection. doctors at the emergency room typically ask questions about the patient as that might help them do better at treating their patients.
the doctor told me the hospital apparently has had a few students from my son’s school being admitted for dengue, thus their conclusion that my son’s school is a dengue hotspot.
since that time, I have recommended tawa-tawa for dengue patients. so far, these are the people I personally know to whom I have recommended the use of tawa-tawa for dengue who were also cured by it – three (3) cousins and five (5) boys from my son’s batch in school for a total of 10 people including my two children. a few of them were actually discharged from the hospital after only two days when tawa-tawa was given on day one of the diagnosis.
to make sure the mosquito carrying dengue are not in our home, we also use electric bug killers like the one in the picture. we put this on at least twice a week overnight at the sala while we sleep to get rid of any mosquito that might be inside the house.
the blue light attracts the mosquitos (and any other flying insect) and as they fly towards the blue light, they get in contact with wires where electric current runs and electrocute the mosquitos. this is very effective, kills all the flying bugs that somehow manage to enter your home.
there are many brands available locally at varying sizes and prices.
please be careful with this gadget and make sure small children and pets do not touch the wires. they are actually designed with safety features but it is still best these are put on at night when nobody is around to touch them.
aside from the above mosquito killer for the house, we now put insect repellent on my son before he goes to school specially that we think his school his a dengue hotspot. we put the repellent on his arms and neck.
we really do not want another dengue case in the family.
if you or if you know anyone who has had dengue and used tawa-tawa as a cure, please share it with us and post your story here.
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