Had a great week last week with a medical team from Southeast Church from Louisville Kentucky. Not only was I happy to be back out in the village of Peredo working, I was happy to have a surgical team come to work for the week. We did a mobile clinic as we usually do, still waiting on the clinic in Peredo to be finished with construction. This team was ready to do surgeries from earthquake injuries but they were flexible and so fun to work with. This was a team I was sad to see leave. We did several cyst and lypoma removals from people an once word got out in the area that American surgeons were here, Haitians started coming out of the woodwork! There were lots of people we were not equipped to handle and I sent them to a nearby hospital with a letter of recommendation.
There were several patients we helped tremendously. One is pictured below. Her name is Manuela and she is a 12 yr old girl who had a large cyst on her foot. It didn't cause her any pain but she was unable to wear an shoes except flip flops. This made it impossible for her to go to school the last year. There is a strict uniform and dress code in the schools in Haiti. Because she couldn't wear shoes she had been out of school for almost a year as the cyst got larger.
Dr B, an orthopedic surgeon in Louisville, examined her and decided to take it off and said it would be no problem but a painful procedure. We had Manuela lay on a church pew. A folding chair was used to set up an IV and for anesthesia meds. There was an anesthesiologist on the team also. He said he could provide sedation. He placed an IV and gave her Versed and Ketamine (made me a little nervous doing this out in a remote village but he did have a pulse ox) and then he gave her nerve block in her ankle. Dr B then removed the cyst and I translated for the girl and doctors. Her mother said the sight of blood made her sick so she waited outside.
The entire procedure took about 25 minutes. The mom was so grateful and Manuela was still pretty drugged up. We asked her to come back the next day to have it looked at. She came back and didn't have any memory of the procedure the previous day thanks to the Versed!
The surgeon and other doctors from this team shrugged off their work this week in saying they did some "simple procedures." To them they were simple, but to the people like Manuela, it means getting to go back to school, a huge privilege for children in Haiti.
Even though Manuela isn't a victim of the earthquake, she was still helped by a medical team God provided through the earthquake. They helped multiple others last week too. They were a huge encouragement to me and I hope they return to Haiti soon! For more information on coming on a medical trip to Haiti and work with us go to www.haitianchristian.org.