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Ethiopian Spine Surgery Mission 2017 – Day 8

Ethiopian Spine Surgery Mission 2017 – Day 8

Dr. Ted Belanger, Spine Surgeon at Texas Back Institute has been leading a medical team to Ethiopia for the last several years. Their mission is to help people with severe spinal conditions with the latest in medical technology and techniques. Continue to follow their journey here on our blog.

Day 8

Another solid 10 hours in the OR for Dr. Belanger.  Alewya Nesr22-year-oldear-old girl who got a T11-12 Vertebral Column Resection and a T5-L5 Posterior Spinal Fusion Instrumentation.  It was amazing to see the change in her back.  Her spine had two 90 degree curves and was protruding out of her back, by the end her spine was straight and she will now be a couple inches taller with square shoulders.  During surgery, we made our usual rounds to visit all the patients who already went through surgery.  Everything is looking good and we are still seeing a lot of smiling faces.  We gave little Dessie the clothes we bought her.  Along with the clothes, we included some light up tennis shoes.  We haven’t seen much of a smile from her yet because she has been scared, but today she gave us the biggest smile! She put on her clothes and was walking around well and will be ready to go home tomorrow! We then went and saw Alayu Letek and Tadios.  Alayu was the man who had ankylosing spondylitis, but is now walking upright for the first time in 10 years after surgery!  He told us that he was dizzy when he stood up and had recurring headaches so we were nervous but quickly realized that it was probably due to a change in his equilibrium. He has been bent over for ten years and now that he isn’t it makes him very dizzy to get up!  We changed Tadios’ bandage for the first time today and it was healing nicely.  He smiled and told us he was happy to see a straight back!  Younger patients usually do really well with these types of surgeries and their spine’s fuse pretty quickly without complications.  We are happy about the progress so far and are hoping more good things are to come!

Texas Back Institute