News from Mali

Mr Greene, an Orthopedic Surgeon, became a Swinfen Referring doctor from Afghanistan, and then moved to a hospital in Ethiopia. With his great Knowledge and experience he also consulted on a few Swinfen cases and offered valuable advice.

 He is now serving others and teaching young doctors at the Koutiala Women’s & Children’s Hospital, Koutiala, MALI, where he has been for over 2 months. The hospital doesn’t have a reputation for orthopedics yet, but the word should get around soon. We do lots of bone infections but also a few fractures and deformities. These challenging cases require enormous amounts of time, nursing care, procedures and prolonged intravenous feedings.

A 14 year-old girl had dysplasia and dislocation of the hip. A good case for an old, but probably rarely performed, operation: Chiari osteotomy. The left pelvis was cut into 2 pieces, then shifted the lower piece inward so that the upper piece would give bony support to the hip bone. So far it seems to be working.

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Case from Afghanistan

3 year old child living far from Faizabad, Wakhan District in Badakhshan Province of North Eastern Afghanistan arrived at the hospital unable to stand or walk from birth and can only say a few words.

The case was sent through to us and was allocated to a Genetics Specialist from Ireland who diagnosed the child with severe rickets which common cause is nutritional and lack of sun. Recommended treatment was Vitamin D and Calcium introduced to the diet

Where the child lives they have no health facilities so have to travel for miles. They still lead a nomadic lifestyle. It often snows in summer and temperatures routinely drop below minus 40 degrees Fahrenheit in winter. Their diet is a typical one of high altitude plateaus where nothing much grows apart from grass, artemisia, and some wild onions in summer. It is similar to the diet found among other nomadic societies, like the Tibetans and the Mongolians. They raise mainly goats, sheep and yaks, as well as Bactrian camels and horses. Because there is no wood, fuel is mainly dried dung. Meat is boiled and sometimes fried in yak butter, everything is eaten on the animals. Meat and diary products are the source of their food. There is not enough sun exposure and vegetables due to cloudy and cold temperature.

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News from the Philippines

Val Smith-Orr runs the Burns Clinic in the Philippines that Swinfen Telemedicine is connected to. Val helps so many, please read her heartfelt story.

We are home safe and sound after a very long couple of days! Mona had to be admitted to hospital for surgical removal of the now hardened dental impression materials, stuck for a week in her palate. Various attempts to remove it were unsuccessful and general anaesthesia was the only remaining option. Rather than going into the gory details of Govt hospitals here, I want to thank Grace and all the wonderful members of the Helping Hands Healing Hearts Ministry team, our DSWD Social Worker Chris(who made me eat candy and cake and drink water to ‘keep me strong’ and all the staff (RN’s and Drs) who helped in Mona’s care in the childrens ward. And of course Evelyn who came to accompany us back home. Materials now removed! Took less than a minute!! Relieved.

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