Revolutionizing Spine Care…Changing Lives

Uganda Spine Surgery Mission 2016 Team One: Day 2

Quote of the day from Michelle (and today’s blog post guest author):

“If you try to please everyone, you end up not pleasing anyone at all”.

First Day of Surgery

Alarms woke us early, time for a hearty breakfast that would be needed to sustain a long day on our feet.

By 7:30 we were in the O.R. and ready to get started, thanks to the fantastic local team who had come to the hospital extra early. Our first patient was Justus, a 64 year old gentleman, who had not been able to walk for 2 months due to his spinal cord being compressed by a herniated disc in his neck. This was causing weakness in both his arms and legs. Dr. Hisey, Dr. Barber, Sherri, Dr. Kisindu and Dr. Kitya scrubbed in to remove Justus’s C5/C6 and C6/C7 discs as well as his C6 vertebral body which they replaced with an expanding cage. The surgery went smoothly, Justus gained better strength in his arms, and we hope he may get some movement in his legs too.

In the meantime, Michelle familiarized herself with the hospitals rehab department then got started with some hands on exercise therapy for patients whose neck or back pain would not be helped by surgery.

Back in the O.R. there was a quick turnaround between cases. The team got to work on George who had a fracture of his first lumbar vertebra and need a fixation to stabilize the fracture. Our last patient for the day was Leo who had three herniated discs in his lumbar spine which were causing him so much pain in both of his legs that he had to walk with crutches. The surgery was a great success.

After a long day of surgery (and even between cases) there were new patients to evaluate and patients following up from yesterday’s clinic after having their imaging completed. Once all of this was taken care of and we checked on our surgery patients one last time, we headed back to the Lake View for a late dinner and to prepare for the next day.


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