Monday, July 12, 2010
The stories speak for themselves - these are a few of the many.
Guillame is a 4 year old girl who had severe osteomyelitis of her right forearm. A large amount of dead bone had to be removed however the prognosis is good and with the VAC therapy she only needed to be in the hospital for 1 week.
Luckson is a 21 year old male pictured here with his sister and Rosemarie an occupational therapist from Loma Linda, CA. Luckson had a severe open fracture in the earthquake and was treated elsewhere with a tibial rod which became infected. The implant was removed as well as all infected material, the bone was stabilized with an external fixator and at a later date bone grafted. The VAC has played an essential role in the salvage of his leg which may have been amputated given other circumstances.
It even works for the little ones, this 2 year old girl suffered from osteomyelitis of the tibia and was going to need several sophisticated operations to treat her large wound until the VAC came along and it completely healed without further surgery.
This young man lost his R leg in the Jan 12 earthquake but because of the VAC and a skin graft we were able to save the knee and an adequate amount of bone below in order for him to have a much simpler below the knee type of prosthesis. He is seen here in a tent in front of the hospital.
Mirlanda is an 11 year old girl that is well known at our hospital as we have been battling a very severe infection in her R femur that was fractured in the earthquake. The VAC has played a vital role in her healing.
The VAC has become a badge of honor amongst our patients and they often ask before surgery "are you going to give me one of the machines?".
Thank you to KCI and the wound care nurses and surgeons who have been instrumental in helping bring this technology to those in need.
Thursday, July 8, 2010
We leave behind friends who have taught us to value love and relationships as much as the American ideals of performance and production. The difficulties of adaptation will hopefully be softened by our ability to hold on to these world views and remain strong in our intentions to live conscientiously, not forgetting the hardships, suffering and love that we have seen during the past 5 ½ years.
December 30, 2004 En Route to Santo Domingo (NYC subway station) - Chad 7, Alex 5
July 6, 2010 Arrival Los Angeles - Alex 11, Chad 13
Our decision to return to southern
Loma Linda University Medical Center
I would like to strengthen
Cure Dominicana continues with the medical leadership of Dr.
The more recent collaboration since the earthquake at Hopital Adventiste d’Haiti continues on as well. A current transition from large volumes of short term earthquake relief volunteers towards a model of medium and long term volunteers with local staff integration is in progress to develop a sustainable program. The hospital has developed a reputation as a premier center for orthopaedic and reconstructive surgery. Orthopaedics is currently being staffed by Mark Perlmutter MD who will hopefully be staying until November when Terry Dietrich MD and his wife Jeannie RN, come to serve on a long term basis. Nathan Lindsey from Loma Linda is serving as assistant administrator along with the tireless work of
Sunday, July 4, 2010
All volunteers coming to the Dominican Republic and Haiti please be aware of heartless airline agents that will cancel your flight if you are not packed in the appropriate containers.
Whether you're traveling to visit loved ones or making one last business deal, we want to make sure that your checked bags arrive at your destination with you this busy travel season. For that reason, American Airlines and American Eagle will implement limitations on checked baggage and boxes from June 5 - August 24, 2010.
For the destinations identified below, boxes† and excess, overweight (more than 70lbs.), or oversized pieces will not be accepted for transportation. Bags weighing 51-70 lbs. will be accepted with the collection of the applicable charge.
Passengers will be allowed to check a maximum of two pieces which must be within the size and weight limits as follows (dimensional measurements calculated by adding the length, width and height of an item):
- 1st piece - up to 62 dimensional inches and 50 lbs.
- 2nd piece - up to 62 dimensional inches and 50 lbs.
†A "box" will be defined as a six-sided container of any size, constructed of cardboard, wood, plastic or metal, which is either square, rectangular or cylindrically shaped and is not normally used for the transportation of items associated with air travel. Plastic tubs/containers and/or coolers are considered to be boxes.
Thursday, July 1, 2010
From patient nutrition to clocks on the wall, they came prepared with all the details. The extensive array of surgical equipment and medical supplies that they brought were essential for performing a variety of surgical procedures. During their stay more than 50 surgical cases were realized. In addition to the surgical accomplishments, they enhanced the entire infrastructure to support our patients before and after surgery, and assure good outcomes. Merril even risked a trip across Port au Prince in a taptap to donate her own blood for one of our critical patients.
In spite of volunteers subsidizing the once a day meal cost for our patients, proper nutrition in many of our critically ill patients has still been a challenge. Merril was able to acquire a large supply of Plumpy Nut which the team Sinai members used to top off all of their baggage to the maximum weight restrictions. She also procured the donation of a similar product Medika Mamba which is produced in Haiti and was delivered in a large quantity to our hospital during their stay. Our Haitian patients found both of these products to be quite appealing and made significant progress on their nutritional status and wound healing.
Cases during the week included open reduction of fractures, pedicle screws for a spine fracture-dislocation, hemiarthroplasties for femoral neck fractures, percutaneous pinning of femoral neck fracture, SIGN interlocking nails for acute and old tibia and femur fractures, osteotomies for malunion/nonunion, bone grafting of nonunions, growing rods for osteogenesis imperfecta, external fixator cases, Ilizarov bone transport, wound debridement, VAC changes, and elective clubfeet surgery.
Dr. Herzenberg, who is sought after internationally for his treatment of clubfoot chiefed our Wednesday clubfoot clinic. Mothers who had traveled across Port au Prince, patiently waited for hours, then departed graciously after their children were casted. Although content and thankful little did they know the world class service that they were receiving.
The shared belief of the Jews and Adventists to remember the Sabbath day was a highlight of the week. At sundown on Friday night candles were lit in the Jewish tradition and time was taken to rest. Several emergent cases were necessary to perform on the Sabbath holiday, but this special time of the week helped us to reflect on the real reason we are here to serve - for the our love of God and our fellow man.