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Circular - June 2019, The problems faced with more complex surgery
Sam Opio was an Acheru patient some years ago, having a large tumour removed from his cheek. Unfortunately the tumour grew again and Sam came back to Acheru a few months ago. He clearly was in urgent need of attention as the tumour continued to grow. The concern was that even if another operation was carried out, the tumour would develop again. A scan was arranged to identify the section of cheekbone which would have to be removed to try to prevent a recurrence, and estimates obtained for the cost of surgery. This was around the time of the Acheru 10th anniversary, and Joyce took the opportunity to do some fundraising towards the expenses while I agreed to provide the balance. A date was set for the operation but the surgeons consulted were then reluctant to proceed, for whatever reason. It was clear that any solution was going to be more difficult than we had envisaged.
The tumour was still growing and by now Sam was experiencing breathing difficulties and becoming very anxious. A surgeon in Mulago, the main government hospital, was willing to carry out the operation but lacked an essential piece of equipment. At Acheru they were doing all they could for Sam and managed to hire the necessary equipment from a private hospital, and to purchase the metal implant needed to replace the section of cheekbone they planned to remove.
This is major surgery on a very sick boy, and by the time you read this it should have been carried out. I hope we will soon know the outcome but whatever happens I am proud of the efforts made at Acheru on Sam's behalf, where at least he has been given hope.
Below are a selection of pictures sent to me by Joyce, and by Alan Clegg, showing something of the work of Acheru and the anniversary celebrations.

Brian Dorman

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