A 9-year-old Zimbabwean boy, who was mauled by a hyena last month, has arrived in South Africa for reconstructive surgery, reports say.
According to a broadcasting television channel, SABC, Rodwell Nkomazana was at a night church service in rural Masvingo when the wild animal attacked him on May 2.
He lost one of his eyes, nose, and parts of his mouth.
AFP reported on Sunday that a team of South African doctors, including plastic surgeons, were preparing to reconstruct Rodwell’s face after doctors in Zimbabwe tried to patch him up and stabilise his condition, but lacked the resources to fully repair his ravaged face.
When Lancet Laboratories heard about Rodwell Khomazana being mauled by a hyena we unhesitatingly agreed to assist with all the necessary pathology investigations Pro Bono. #LancetLabCares https://t.co/lfaLZkkDui
— Lancet Laboratories (@LancetLab_ZA) June 19, 2021
Unable to afford specialised surgery only available abroad, his mother contacted medics in South Africa, who agreed to operate on him for free in a private Johannesburg clinic.
“When she (the mother) mentioned the story of this poor child mauled by a hyena I couldn’t say no,” plastic surgeon Ridwan Mia said.
A Sowetan Live report said the doctors who offered their services for free were:
- Ridwan Mia (plastic surgeon)
- Saruyen Moonsamy- (emergency practitioner and flight doctor)
- Razvi Ahmed (head and neck surgeon)
- Jameel Desai (maxillofacial surgeon)
- Kim Barnard (paediatrician)
- Hizir Mukaddam (anaesthetist )
- Shafeeqa Mayet (anaesthetist)
- Luqmaan Variawa (anaesthetist)
Rodwell was flown to Johannesburg on Saturday and greeted by hospital staff singing South Africa’s national anthem.
Mia and his team will perform exploratory surgery on Monday, after which they will schedule a complex operation expected to last around 20 hours.