If you had told me back in February everything that would need to happen to best care for this sweet little girl, I might have become overwhelmed. It has been incredible to see how God has provided for the multitude of details for her first trip for surgery to remove her frontonasal encephalocele and for her second (unexpected) trip to Kenya.
About a month and a half ago, Manga’s mom Sunday brought her back to the clinic with a small area of swelling on the right side of her nose and under her right eye. After consulting with one of her doctors in Kenya, I prescribed some antibiotics and asked her to return for review in a few days or sooner if the problem worsened. 2 days later I was on call and at the clinic on Saturday afternoon when they returned. The area had become a large mass on the right side of her face and she needed to be referred to our local hospital for more specialized care. They were able to help her temporarily, but after talking with doctors in the US, Canada, and Kenya, it was determined best for her to return to Kenya for a procedure by an oculoplastics surgeon. Thankfully the recommended doctor agreed to see her and helped me schedule an appointment.
Again, in the Lord’s good timing, Sunday and Manga’s documents were ready (mostly from their previous trip) and they were able to come along with me as I headed to Kenya for my scheduled R&R. The day before we left Doro, again they returned because of a new abscess on her face. We were able to drain it and put her on more antibiotics, but it was affirming that the procedure that was scheduled was definitely needed to prevent her from having these recurrent infections.
Soon after our arrival in Kenya, Manga followed up with one of her previous ENT doctors and had a CT that showed infection around her lacrimal gland and her nasal bone. That doctor, knowing Manga was scheduled for surgery the following week, got her admitted to the hospital and started on antibiotics over the weekend. I went with them to their appointment the following Monday with the oculoplastics surgeon. As I had feared, the doctor was hesitant to do the surgery when scheduled that week because of the underlying infection. So, back they went to the hospital in Kijabe for more antibiotics for a couple weeks.
Today, about a week after that appointment, Manga is looking much better. She is scheduled for surgery at a hospital in Nairobi next Tuesday, October 27. Unfortunately, I have to head back to South Sudan, but again the Lord has provided. A former co-worker that is Southern Sudanese and studying in Nairobi, has agreed to help Manga and her mother navigate the hospital in Nairobi and serve as an Arabic translator for them. She will be in the hospital for about 3 days next week. She will then come back out to Kijabe where her main doctor can follow her and while they await her surgical follow up appointment about 2-3 weeks after surgery. If all looks ok at that time, she could then return to South Sudan. Please remember her in your prayers–that she will have complete healing and this procedure will help her not have any further complications. Thank you to the many who have loved her and her family, prayed, sent funds for her care, and continue to ask how she is doing. This is definitely a team effort.