Hubby overjoyed as elephantiasis sufferer recovers

2011-05-27 00:00

THE “over-the-moon” husband of elephantiasis sufferer Nana Ntombela of Gcilima in Margate told The Witness yesterday that his life and his wife’s have been changed forever by the surgery she had at the Netcare Sunninghill Hospital in Johannesburg this week.

“I have been looking after her since 2005 when I left my job to take care of her and our young daughter Zama (15). She started by suffering from cold and then her leg started to grow abnormally big. Yes, life has been very difficult and I have had no job since then when I needed to look after her,” said an emotional Sandile Ntombela.

Nana is likely to be discharged from hospital in the next few weeks, said Ntombela, who cannot wait for the moment to sees her walk again.

He told The Witness that he has seen “fantastic improvements” since his wife had the operation and physiotherapy. He said he has been constantly at her side since she developed elephantiasis, a blockage of the lymph drainage sytem caused by parasites, in 2005.

The couple have been happily married for 10 years.

“I never thought that I would see such a difference in her life, that it was possible, and I am running out of words to thank all the professionals who looked after her surgery. They operated on her leg and it looks small compared to what it used to look like and I believe that when she leaves the hospital in few weeks she will be walking on her own,” he said.

Ntombela said he greatly appreciates the support they have received from the community.

A health professional who has been very close to the couple, but who did not want to be named, said Ntombela has looked after Nana very well.

“This husband was amazing and actually made her recovery possible. Nana should really have had bedsores and her leg should have been in a worse state than it was, but because of his absolute love and dedication, Nana did not have a single bedsore. Her leg was also in the best condition possible because he lovingly massaged it and put talcum powder on it every day and night since 2005. This husband loved his wife so dearly that it has made her operation and recovery possible.”

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