SUNCITY

Doctors Save Hand By Attaching It To Stomach

Frank Delaitabua’s surgery is not something you see everyday. His right hand was attached to his stomach following an incident early last month. The 20-year-old nightclub bouncer said it all
26 Sep 2014 09:00
Doctors Save Hand By Attaching It To Stomach
P Meghji Operations Manager Anginesh Prasad (front second from left) and General Manager Eremasi Matanitabu (on his left) with staff at the launch on Tuesday night. Photo: Supplied.

Frank Delaitabua’s surgery is not something you see everyday. His right hand was attached to his stomach following an incident early last month.

The 20-year-old nightclub bouncer said it all started when a drunk was hassling one of their customers one Saturday night.

“I tried to stop him asking him  politely to go. Then he started punching me and in self- defence I punched him back.

“Although I hurt my right thumb very badly I went to work the next day where I realised that I could not feel my thumb anymore and my hand was paining and I needed medical care.”

He said the next day (Sunday) he went to the Colonial War Memorial Hospital (CWMH) and was asked to return the next day, Monday.

“I went on Monday only to find out that they did not have an orthopaedic so I was asked to go back on Tuesday.”

Mr Delaitabua said when he went to the hospital on Tuesday he was given the same reason and was asked to return on Wednesday.

“By then I knew my hand was badly infected as the pain was getting terrible and I opted for a massage because being a right hander it was hard for me to do my day-to-day activities.”

He said when he went back on Wednesday, the doctors took him into the operating theatre straight away and operated on his hand.

The Ministry of Health has not said why there was a delay in operating on Mr Delaitabua’s hand. However, they said he had presented a closed fracture of the right thumb.

“Before presenting to the hospital, he opted for a massage and came to hospital only when he had developed a compartment syndrome of the hand,” the Ministry said.

“He then underwent surgery to treat the condition which had caused a lot of soft tissue damage to his right hand and the surgery he had is one used to treat a type of injury and soft tissue loss.”

Mr Delaitabua said one of the doctors from India operated on his hand. The doctor told him that the best way to save the hand was to attach it to the stomach where there was a good blood supply.

Mr Delaitabua said the surgery went smoothly and his affected hand felt warm but it was numb.

“My parents were worried sick about me and they were praying for me to get better.”

He said he would have another surgery in three weeks time where his hand would be removed from the stomach and then he would go for physiotherapy.

“My hand hurts a lot and I cannot do anything about it. If only the doctors had treated me the same day I wouldn’t be having this bad situation.”

A number of such procedures have been performed at the CWMH in the last two years.

Feedback: zafiya.shamim@fijisun.com.fj

 



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