He is staying with a host family in Ohio and the surgeries are being performed by Shriner’s Hospital for Children in Cincinnati. He will have more surgeries in February and May and then possibly return back to China this coming October. In-between surgeries Zexi Xu is able to attend preschool in Ohio.
Zexi Xu’s Story
There are six people in his family: his great grandmother, grandparents, parents and Zexi Xu. His great grandmother is 95 years old. She broke her leg in 2012 but didn’t receive any treatment because of her age and because the costs of medical treatment were prohibitive. His grandfather is deaf and his grandparents grow cotton, rice, rapeseed and vegetables on their land. His father, Hui Xu, has a stutter and is a truck driver. His mother, Huarui Chen, stays at home to take care of Zexi and helps in the fields and around the house.
On November 30, 2013, his grandparents were busy drying rice outside, so Zexi was playing with some older kids in the village. The kids played with a fire and Zexi got burned by the fire. His head was severely burned as well as his hands and feet.
After the accident in 2013, he was admitted to a local hospital in Xiangfan City. He had an emergency tracheotomy but no treatment on his burns. Later he was admitted to another hospital on December 11, 2014 for burn treatments. He only had one skin-graft surgery and stayed in the hospital for 3 months and was then discharged. He needed more surgeries but his family already has lots of debt and couldn’t afford them. The scars have grown thicker and thicker. His mouth has become smaller because of the scars around his mouth. He will need some surgeries on his face to release the skin around his nose and mouth.
Zexi Xu is a lively and cheerful child who likes to sing, and now enjoys preschool in-between treatments thanks to his host family.
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