Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Update on Noora

Noora is an Iraqi girl getting medical treatment up in Maine. Her treatment is paid for by funds from No More Victims. Noora was shot by a US soldier, and it damaged her skull. They are trying to do a prosthetic implant (surgery for this was last December), but as the following report via email shows, it is not going so well:

Hi Everyone,

I so regret having to write this update to let you know that the Integra product (which I wrote about in the last update) was unsuccessful in it's attempt to rebuild tissue in the open wound on Noora's scalp.

The new plan, unfortunately, necessitates the temporary removal of Noora's prosthetic skull. The fact that Noora's scalp has had an open wound onto the prosthetic skull, for this length of time, was the determining factor for removing the skull. What Dr. Attwood and his colleagues are fearful of, is that if the skull is not removed and sterilized, it could potentially present problems for Noora once her scalp is closed and she returns to Iraq. The concern is that if they close the wound without sterilizing the skull, bacteria, which is now possibly embedded in the skull, could fester and present a significant threat to Noora's health.

On Monday, the skull will be removed and three balloons will be placed beneath her scalp. Over the course of approximately four to six weeks, the balloons will be inflated, stretching her scalp, and in turn making the new skin, which will be used to cover the prosthetic skull, once it is replaced. It is estimated that it will be sometime in the beginning of May before the surgeries and healing process are complete and Noora and Afef are able to return home, to Iraq.

February 10th marked the eight month Noora and Afef have been away from their home and family. One month in Jordan awaiting visas and seven months here in Portland. For Noora and her family, who have weathered and sacrificed so much over these past months, to be faced once again with a setback, is heartbreaking. Afef defines himself as a "believer man". He has faith that this journey, however difficult it may be, will in time yield an end to Noora's suffering. So as Noora and her family prepare for her surgeries, please continue to keep them in your thoughts and prayers that they will find the strength and resolve to carry them through these upcoming months. Your unending love and concern for Noora and her family has meant so much to them, and they ask that I pass their sincere gratitude to you, along with their greeting of "Salaam Alaykum" (peace be upon you).

Susi and Doug

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