Sunday, June 21, 2009

Mary's little hand...

This is Mary’s little hand.

She has been in the hospital for 4 days.

I am so thankful she is alive.

The cannula you see is what enabled someone’s blood to enter her bloodstream.

Life saving blood and life saving medications flowed through her veins.

Mary is only 3 months old.

And lives in the far east of Freetown.

She came to my clinic on Tuesday.

The severity of her illness made her my first patient of the day.

She had been sick for one week with a fever and difficulty breathing.

She had a high fever and a respiratory rate of 86.

She was acutely ill and obviously distressed.

All in all her condition was poor.

Her lab results proved she would need a blood transfusion urgently.

Further tests showed VERY HIGH malaria parasitemia, fairly unusual in a 3 month old.

I was in a rush to get her referred as quickly as I could.

Unfortunately the (free and well equipped) NGO hospital was full.

The only option was the 1-2 hour trip across town to the government run Children’s hospital.

Not referring her would mean death.

A stat dose of antimalarials, a referral letter & some cash later and Mary and her mom were on their way.

Several times during the week I thought of Mary, wondering if she made it to the hospital and received blood.

On Friday I went to the hospital to check up on my referral cases.

And, to my surprise I found Mary there with her mom AND she was looking much better.

Mary was happy and smiling and breathing fine.

Her mother was very thankful and so was I.


deyon said...

Dear Sandra, Such a touching posting! I love your writing and photography...and even more I love your compassion and commitment. I am looking forward to seeing you in July at the Reunion. You're coming, right?

Anonymous said...

Another little one touched, by you and through you by God.

~ Act Justly. Love Mercy. Walk Humbly. micah 6:8 ~