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Women left disabled after uterus cleaning goes horribly wrong

Women left disabled after uterus cleaning goes horribly wrong

Zorena Jantze

RIANA Roman, a 30-year-old mother of two from Swakopmund, once led a normal healthy life until tragedy struck in late 2017 after a routine uterus cleaning surgery after a miscarriage went horribly wrong.


This forced doctors to allegedly removed sections of her small intestines, leaving her paralysed from the waist down.


The distraught woman has since come forward to tell her story and to seek assistance in hopes of regaining an ordinary life. 


Roman states that in August 2017, after a 3-month long pregnancy, she experienced a spontaneous birth, also known as a miscarriage, and was thus admitted to the Swakopmund State Hospital to undergo a uterus cleaning operation.

“When I arrived at the hospital, I complained that I was bleeding slightly and that I’m in severe pain. However, the doctors advised me that I should go back home and only return if I have heavy bleeding with clots. I protested to going home as I was in pain,” Roman recalls. 


She added that after her condition worsened she was admitted and during a week spent in hospital, she had a miscarriage. 


Roman further explained that she was taken in for the uterus cleaning procedure around 10:00 on a Tuesday and placed under anesthetic. 


She woke up at around 15:00 that day in intense and unfamiliar pain, only to learn that she had been undergoing emergency surgery for several hours.


In a state of confusion, she states that she asked what happened to her as she could not move her body, but was met with silence as doctors could not provide her with answers. 


Upon further probing and insistence from her fiancé, Roman states that that they were later told that during the uterus cleaning, “the small intestines of the bowels came out” and that the surgeon on duty thought it was part of the umbilical cord left behind in the uterus. 


The doctor allegedly pulled at it and pulled the intestines out, and cut out large parts of her small intestine.


Since the operation, Roman states that when surgeons re-opened the wound in Windhoek, they found that only around 50cm of her intestines were left and that the rest had been cut out. The small intestine of humans is usually about 6 metres long and the large intestine is about 1.5 metres. Her uterus was then also removed. 


“I just want to feel normal again. My health has deteriorated over the last years. Whenever I eat, I vomit a few minutes later. Nothing can stay down, not even water. I’m pleading to the ministry of health or any good Samaritan. I need help so that I can have an artificial small intestine replacement surgery to reverse the damage that has been caused to me,” Roman stated.  


Upon inquiry, Superintendent at the Swakopmund Hospital, Dr. Amir Shakur confirmed that Roman indeed went under the knife at the hospital for the said surgery, however, stated that not all information given by Roman is correct. 


“For somebody to cut up someone and remove their intestines means that they would want that person paralysed or for them to live a miserable life. The case has been referred to the Health Professionals Council of Namibia (HPCNA). The client has a right to bring forward a case, however, I cannot release any information due to doctor patient confidentiality,” Dr Shakur said. 


While Roman set out her case in detail to the HPCNA in November 2017, she stated that her medical reports are yet to be forwarded to the health counsel after 2 years of waiting as they deny having received any medical reports on her case. 


The HPCNA confirmed the registration of the case with them, however, could not return a written response to Informanté at the time of publishing.

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