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Arm reconstruction to a former girl soldier

Beneficiaries: Pratheepa

Cities / Regions involved:  Sri Lanka - Friuli Venezia Giulia

PeriodFebruary 2011 - November 2011

Sources of funding: Regione Friuli Venezia Giulia in collaboration with the SMM Hospital of Udine and Centro Balducci

Total cost: 35.000 euros

Project Statusconcluded

Pratheepa was made a child-soldier during the bloody civil war that lasted over 30 years. Pratheepa, during a fire fight, lost the use of her left arm because hit by enemy fire. She survived and the health service of the revolutionary army LTTE placed a plaque that made impossible any kind of arm mobility, thus impeding any possibility of working. Thanks to @uxilia, which runs in the Batticaloa district of Sri Lanka its own facility, on February 17th Pratheepa is in Italy, in our region, for a surgery that will place a titanium endoprosthesis in her elbow.

@uxilia managed to get the visa (an ad hoc visa for receiving health services in Italy) for the girl, thanks to the advocacy work done in cooperation with the Italian Embassy towards the Government of Sri Lanka. The Region, thanks to @uxilia request, could cover the surgery related-costs.

March 12, 2011 - Pratheepa – successful surgery

Hospitalized in the Orthopaedics Department of the Hospital "Santa Maria della Misericordia" in Udine, Pratheepa got the surgery on March 9. The medical staff involved in the surgery, coordinated by Dr. Nicholas Collini and by Dr. Silvio Demitri, has worked for nine hours in a row. The plaque was removed and it was decided not to replace the elbow with a titanium prosthesis, but to proceed with the reconstruction of all the bones and joints, in order to restore the limb function and the ability of movement. The next step will be working on the hand, which has been denervated and has no prehensile capacity. Since in Friuli, Pratheepa is never left alone. Federica Albini and Paola Paoletig, @uxilia volunteers, took good care of her. She could experience with them some of the most exciting episodes of her life. A long series of "firsts ": the snow, a trip in Tarvisio, through the mountains, in a store , in a shopping mall.

March 30, 2011 - Pratheepa begins rehabilitation

Since few days Pratheepa has begun the rehabilitation of the arm at the hospital of Udine; the rehabilitation will be needed for few months and it has to be done on a daily basis. She is now able to do some autonomous movements with the elbow, that for the time being it is supported by a complex legal guardian bought by @uxilia and that allows the proper movement of the muscles. Pratheepa will leave the Hospital in mid-April and she will go to a specialized centre, close to the hospital in Udine, in order to continue the daily rehabilitation. She will be then hosted in the reception centre “Ernesto Balducci” in Zugliano, in the municipality of Pozzuolo del Friuli

November 5, 2011 – Pratheepa is back in Sri Lanka with her arm working again.

Pratheepa managed to arrive in Italy on 08/ 02/2011, thanks to the issue of a visa for health reasons. In the Hospital of Udine, thanks to Dr. Collini who has performed the surgery and Dr. Ilia De Luca who has supervised her rehabilitation, the functionality of the arm and hand has been restored. Pratheepa went then back to Sri Lanka on 05/11/2011 together with Laura Boy "Pratheepa is happy to be back with her family, there were no problems during the return trip and she is now fully reinstated in her village.” She is now helped by @uxilia, through an ad hoc Sponsorship Programme. Laura Boy says “we will teach her a job and ensure a financial coverage that will allow her to work, through a micro-credit loan ".








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