HÀ NỘI — Nguyễn Thiên Hương, who has an inherited blood disorder called thalassemia, finally got her wish: She and her husband, who have been married for 10 years, took their wedding vows at a public ceremony on International Thalassaemia Day (May 8).
The wedding ceremony was sponsored by the National Institute of Hematology and Blood Transfusion.
Hương, 36, of the Red River province of Vĩnh Phúc, discovered that she had the disorder when she was 13 years old. She has to receive two blood transfusions each month for the rest of her life.
Hương met her husband Hoàng Dũng of Hà Nội 10 years ago. They wanted to get married, but their parents opposed the union.
They went ahead with it, anyway. Now, they have a nine-year-old son.
After hearing about Hương’s story, Nguyễn Anh Trí, the head of the national institute, worked with the Việt Nam Thalassemia Association to arrange the ceremony.
Trí said that discrimination against patients with a severe form of the disease, which can cause physical weakness, still exists in Việt Nam. However, if the disorder, which can be passed on to patients’ children, is detected early, they can live a normal life.
Trí said 1,800 patients with the disease had visited the institute for examination and treatment. But only 42 per cent of them had strictly followed the treatment guidelines. The remaining return for treatment only when their symptoms become much worse, he said. — VNS