A few posts back I wrote about a little 9 month old boy named Emmanuel (the name Emmanuel in Liberia must be like John here) who lives in Liberia but is suffering terribly because he was born without an anus. It looks like everything is coming together for him to come to Minnesota for surgery. Here is the letter I received from the surgeon today. I plan to follow his story and hopefully meet him while we are in Liberia. Georgette, the woman who made this possible is obviously thrilled. I'm pretty excited myself!
We have contacted Fairview and University of Minnesota Physicians for a cost exemption for this child’s care. I will do the surgery for no cost and I have talked to the group of anesthesiologist that provides services at the University of Minnesota Children’s Hospital and they have agreed to provide anesthesia services at no cost. We just need to work with the Hospital. Although I do not see a problem, these things take time. I estimate that we could have the child here late summer or early fall for his care. I would go ahead and contact the family for your story as we progress forward.
This child will need a radiological contrast study to examine the colon, a MRI to examine the spine and spinal cord as there is an association of children with an imperforate anus and tethering of the spinal cord. He will also need a kidney Ultrasound to examine the kidneys. His surgery will be conducted in two stages; first to construct an anus and the second to take down the colostomy. Total time in Minneapolis should be about 6 weeks.
Daniel A. Saltzman, M.D., Ph.D.
Chief, Division of Pediatric Surgery