Troubles with Tibial Hemimelia
Faith lives in the Caribbean. Year-round warmth, white coral beaches, and crystal-blue waters beckon to countless tourists. But even in the bright tropical sun, there’s a dark side to life. The remote location of the islands makes it hard to access specialized medical care. This includes treatments for birth defects, such as tibial hemimelia.
When Faith was a baby, doctors found out she had tibial hemimelia. Tibial hemimelia is when the tibia (shin bone) is either too short or entirely absent. It often affects other bones in the leg, ankle, and foot. In this case, Faith is missing a main bone in her right foot. Faith’s mother, Stacey, was worried: “She cannot walk without major reconstructive surgery.”
“She cannot access care at home,” said Stacey, “so we had to travel to the US.” The good news was that a Shriners Hospital in Los Angeles had an orthopedic surgeon on their team who specializes in tibial hemimelia.
“We were able to get an appointment for Faith,” said Stacey, “and so began our journey.”
Clearing the Hurdles
However, two hurdles came up. The hospital was almost 4,000 miles away from Faith’s home. Her family wasn’t able to afford the airfare.
Mercy Medical Angels helped Faith clear those hurdles. A partnership with American Airlines made it possible for Faith to fly to Los Angeles. Faith visited an orthopedic surgeon for a medical consultation regarding treatment for tibial hemimelia. “Thanks to Mercy Medical Angels,” said Stacey, “this trip was possible.”
Faith will have to continue flying to the US for surgery and checkups. Mercy Medical Angels and American Airlines will be with her all the way.
When asked about how Mercy Medical Angels and American Airlines helped Faith, Stacey answers with joy. “Without this assistance from Mercy Medical Angels and American Airlines, this consultation at Shriners would not be possible for Faith. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart!”
Often, children like Faith cannot access medical care in their home countries. Mercy Medical Angels and American Airlines are ready to help. No matter where they live, children can travel around the world for healing.